REVIEW: Daughter – ‘Not To Disappear’

daughter review feature

Artist: Daughter
Album: Not To Disappear
Genre: Indie rock, but so much more.

If Daughter‘s If You Leave was their serenely beautiful entry into the world of music, the band’s sophomore full-length, Not To Disappear, is their monumental rebuttal. The British act return with a huge release, as easily stated by opener “New Ways.” The track introduces listeners to the heavier palate of sounds the band brings to the table this time around, with electronics and ambiance playing a bigger role, but not the only role. Thundering drums are still present, and the airy guitars weave between the pulses of electronics surging through the tracks.

With little break, “Numbers” elevates listeners just as cathartically as “New Ways.” The previously released single, “Doing The Right Thing,” fits perfectly in terms of the record, as listeners will learn that Not To Disappear is one of the most refreshingly cohesive efforts released recently.

Each track can be felt as connected through a tone, or theme, but Daughter present each adventure as a singular piece, with crescendos and thematic elements remaining personal to each track. Listeners will find themselves reverberating with each offering in different regards, though as a whole, Not To Disappear will be unified by its trying tone.

“No Care” speeds up the tempo of the release a bit, creating a sense of urgency not generally felt throughout the rest of the release. Album closer, “Made Of Stone,” is the slow, brooding exit that completes Not To Disappear with utter beauty.

Each member presents their best performances to date, with the vocals, musicianship and more, shadowing the band’s wonderful past releases. Singer/guitarist Elena Tonra presents beautiful melodies, with the bridge of “Mothers” being one of her finest outputs (though each word sung by her is felt just as powerfully as any, to be honest). Guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Igor Haefeli and percussionist Remi Aguilella do a fantastic job at creating vast landscapes for Tonra’s vocals to shine, for each piece on Not To Disappear feels entirely apposite, something rather refreshing from the monotony in music (as a whole) currently.

This album is full, and nothing short of it. It is lush, dense, heavy, quiet, soft, loud and much, much more. The experience of this album is trying, but Daughter have created wonderful sounds to illuminate their beauty, and create one of the best pieces of the year. I know we are barely into 2016, but I imagine by the end of the year, Not To Disappear will have the same effect it had in the beginning. And if it has not, something has gone terribly wrong. Start your year right, experience this art.

SCORE: 9/10

Drew Caruso

Drew Caruso is a Bostonian who, when not writing about music and film, spends his time getting lost in New England, reading books, talking about science whether people want to listen or not, and more. To see the thoughts of a scientist by day and a writer by night, follow him on Twitter.
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