ALBUM REVIEW: Years & Years - Communion

Friday, July 10, 2015

London based trio Years & Years have had a lot of hype surrounding them since taking out the BBC Sound of 2015 poll last year, but their debut album Communion will put sceptics at ease. Communion is dance-pop at it’s best, with electronic beats of Mikey Goldsworthy and Emre Turkman combined with the spellbinding vocals of Olly Alexander the album is straight away one of best pop albums of 2015.

Whilst exploring the highs and lows of being in a relationship, it’s almost as if we are taking a glimpse into Alexander’s diary. You can see that Years & Years were clear with their intentions with this album, the R&B and electronic influences create a distinct sound, which works so well for them. The album opens with the atmospheric ‘Foundation’ the track is very minimalistic but builds to create a great introduction to Communion. 

‘Real’ is the epitome of Years & Years, it makes you want to dance whilst pulling at your heart strings with the emotive lyrics, which can come as a rarity within dance music. Every track on the album features these deeply personal lyrics; yet still holds the essence of a great dance track. With songs such as ‘Border’ ‘Ties’ and ‘Gold’ having these great synths and unique sounds that generate tracks that could instantly become chart toppers. 

The trios latest single ‘Shine’ is one of the only tracks on the album that isn’t about heartbreak, rather it’s about the beginnings of a new relationship. It explores the excitement of sharing a connection with another individual and finally finding someone who is a positive influence in your life rather than negative. With lyrics such as “And It's you that I've been waiting to find” it’s a little bit of hope in a sea of heartbreak. 

An old favourite ‘Eyes Shut’ has been reworked into a slower and piano based track, a calming moment that breaks up the sound on the album. Alexander’s calming voice draws you in making the track one of the standouts on Communion.  Along with ‘Without’, another slower song which Alexander’s vocal ability is truly showcased, as well is his skill to write amazing lyrics, “You don’t belong to me, you’re too far away, everything falls apart when I try to say, you’re in love, in love without me”.

What is refreshing is Years & Years ability to not shy away from the use of male pronouns in their lyrics, in tracks such as ‘Memo’ “who wouldn't want it when he looks like that?” one of the more quieter and soulful tracks on the album it explores a relationship that is presumably a secret and the complications that brings. It is also the last track of a brilliant debut album that will stick with you. Although it’s not necessary a revolutionary album, there is something unique about Communion that is worth your time. 

Written by Brittney Klein 

Years & Years - Communion 
Release date: July 10th