Album review 1 - "The Brink" by the Jezabels

Okay before we start let's get this out of the way - I am a long term fan of theirs so this album will be a little biased in different aspects. Let's go ahead anyways! Also forgive me my lack of technical music jargon (/ u \)

the brink, the jezabels, lovers
Album cover (love the art of this btw)

First impression: I listened to the singles they released prior to the release of the album - that is, "The End" and "Look of Love". I immediately noticed the more upbeat tone in comparison to their debut album, Prisoner, which was more on the melancholic/nostalgic side. 

the brink, the jezabels, cd, album, inside
Look at this spread, oh yes. 

Brief opinions of songs (+ my rating on my ipod) - Written as I listen.

The brink: Great melancholic undertone to start, relatively upbeat, sweet and memorable tune throughout the song. Love the lingering end. Good choice of song as the first one. 4/5 

Time to dance: Intro drew me right in. Love the beat very much, the vocal tune is particularly favourable in this song, overall song is upbeat and with the right amount of melancholy underneath. 5/5 

Look of love: Upbeat and very catchy - however not as impressive as their other songs in my opinion - it edges a little too close to mainstream pop for my liking. (Don't get me wrong though, I do like pop, I just am not as interested in hearing it from some bands.) Vocals and tune are fantastic though, and I like the slight contrast during the bridge with the rest of the song. 4/5

Beat to beat: Well that was a shocking start - in that I completely didn't expect that. The tune overall is catchy and the style is quite unlike their usual music. While I thought before that Look of Love edged too close to mainstream pop, this dived right into the area and rolled around. Though I don't favour the first half of this song at all, the second half + the bridge convinced me to finish this till the end - which was a little too abrupt for my liking, too. While I personally am not fond of this song at the moment, I wouldn't be surprised if in a few weeks this is on my Most Played list. 3/5

Angels of fire: Great start - was interested right from the first note. I very much like the tune of this song. I love the usual downbeat-upbeat contrast. Some of the background sounds seem a little strange to me, though. The ending was good to hear. 4/5

No country: Starting notes interested me - I really liked the instrumental. Expected great follow through - and I was not disappointed. Absolutely fantastic throughout the rest of the song, the upbeat is just wonderful and catchy. Wonderful harmony as well. Overall, one of my favourites so far. 5/5*

the jezabels, the brink, album, song

The end: When this was released, I was immediately enthralled. Upbeat tune, stunning vocals and amazing layering of instrumentals, good music video, this song has it all - including the typical Jezabels special flavour that makes it distinctively theirs. The contrast between the upbeat and the downbeat is just perfect. The bridge adds to the lull that cuts to emphasise the upbeat. The end (see what I did there) compliments the rest of the song, leaving it on a hopeful and lingering end. Can I go on more about this song without being annoying? Too bad. I love this song so much. 5/5* (If I could give this song more starts I goddamn would.)

Got velvet: Great buildup in the intro to draw the listener right back into the album. The beat is more toned down at the starter than the rest of the earlier songs - until later. The chorus is fantastic - is catchy and memorable. Once the song gets right into the thick of things, the tune is just wonderful. Bridge is haunting and a wonderful contrast to the rest of the song. Good choice in fading out the song. 5/5

Psychotherapy: Promising start - light and pleasant to hear. Vocals and tune are delicate and very pleasant to listen to. At first was apprehensive by lack of change in beat however the drawing out of it till the middle is worth it - adds flavour to the song. The upbeat is not as strong as the others, but enjoyable nevertheless. - 4/5

All you need: Also has excellent vocals, and a great choice for the 'final song'. Love the chorus - the tune is incredibly favourable to the ears. Song is hopeful and faintly nostalgic. Instrumental complements the rest of the song. Contrasts between verse and chorus tunes are particularly good. Bridge is amazing and good ending. 5/5*

Marianne: Instrumental start is good to hear. Vocals and tune is very sweet but balanced with a good amount of melancholia. Chorus is particularly favourable. 5/5

the jezabels, lyrics booklet, the brink
Lyrics booklet

Overall opinion

Excellent ordering of songs - smooth transitions between the tunes. Choice of lyrics are as fantastic as ever and provide good food for thought. The vocals are also fantastic - the instrumentals mostly well chosen and layered. Well done to the Jezabels on an overall great comeback album! 

Despite not favouring all of them, there are some clear favourites of mine (asterisks). Nevertheless I love the album very much - I've found that with the Jezabels, listening to the music more often allows one to like them more. As a result, their albums/EPs are good to invest in, because the music becomes timeless. While I currently prefer Prisoner more than the Brink, I know that I'll enjoy the Brink more and more over the next month. 

There is no doubt in my mind that the Jezabels are a talented band that will only continue to increase their influence in the alternative music scene with time, however this time round I really was a little disappointed to see that they have catered towards the mainstream for some songs. While this is understandable, it does take away the flavour and fulfilling experience that their other songs have. I would have preferred to see such changes in an extended play, rather than an album. 

As a result, I've given them a current rating of...


Final rating: 8.5/10.

the jezabels, the brink, album, songs
Back cover

Till next time~

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