Release Review: “If You Wait”- London Grammar, Album, out now

Over a year in the making, the widely anticipated album from bloggers favourites London Grammar is here to grace our ears and haunt our souls. After posting their first enchanting single “Hey Now” online in December 2012, London trio Hannah Reid, Dot Major and Dan Rothman have welcomed over a million online hits along with Radio 1 recognition, whilst remaining humble and somewhat aloof.
Undoubtedly “If You Wait” is an understated masterpiece showcasing Hannah Reid’s operatic vocals with a unique combination of soul, angst and emotion. Whilst comparisons to The XX and Florence and the Machine abound, London Grammar characterise the perils of youth, love and fractured dreams in a more empathetic and evocative manner.
The album is made up of familiar singles “Hey Now”, “Wasting My Young Years”, “Strong” and “Metal & Dust”, with their minimalist auras, forceful choruses and magnetic pop hooks. However, new songs such as “Stay Awake” and the spellbinding cover of French House artist Kavinksky’s “Nightcall” shine brighter whilst providing new listening to the already avid London Grammar fan.
As an evolution of what the band have already created, bonus tracks “Help”, “Darling Are You Gonna Leave”, “High Life” and “When We Were Young” expand on their ambient but orchestral musical meditation. Collaboration with chart-topping dance duo Disclosure, “Help Me Lose My Mind,” reveals a favorable up-tempo stance to London Grammar, creating a classical influence on intense electronica.
The distinct style that London Grammar follow of picked guitar rifts, subtle synths, trip-hop beats and quiet keyboards makes for a strong and cohesive album full of songs powerful enough to stand-alone but sounding precise as one. As a debut album, “If You Wait” is polite but powerful, making way for progression and more enthralling efforts to come.
8/10, Out Now, Amber Ainsworth
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