On Aug. 7, Glass Animals released possibly the best album of the year. The album was on track to release back in June, but was worth the wait. Following drummer Joe Seaward’s devastating bike accident in 2018, the band was unsure if they would ever make music together again. Luckily, Seaward made a full recovery and Glass Animals was able to release the masterpiece titled “Dreamland.”
The single “Dreamland” was released prior to the full album. However, the first new song on the album titled “Tangerine” is one of the most catchy songs on the album. The tangerine in this track is referring to a relationship where two people have known each other for many years, but have gained a lot of baggage along the way. The upbeat tone of the song contrasts with the idea of missing the way things used to be when they were less complicated.
An important aspect to note throughout the album is the use of the short audio recordings. These are from the lead singer Dave Bayley’s childhood in College Station. Each section is a glimpse into his past and are complemented throughout the album by various references in the tracks to childhood memories in Texas.
The album continues on with the absolute banger titled “Space Ghost Coast To Coast,” named after a childhood superhero cartoon. This song has a dark tone to it, as it is about Bayley’s childhood friend who was plotting a school shooting. Starting the song with lyrics like “Playing too much of that GTA” and “where’d you get that gun from, eh?” sets the tone for what the song will discuss. While there are still some positive elements from his childhood, such as the mentioning of “dunkaroos” and “hot pockets,” it is greatly contrasted with the overall intense feel of the song. This is by far the best song on the album.
In contrast, some who may have not listened deeply to the lyrics would say that “Domestic Bliss” is one of the weaker songs of the album. However, the song is about Bayley witnessing domestic abuse of his childhood friend’s mother. This song is extremely emotional, which is why it is instrumentally stronger than one of their typical tracks with a more interesting beat. The band shows true range here by tapping into a deep emotion and putting it all together so beautifully in a song. It was also extremely important for them to release such a song during a time when domestic abuse has been rising.
Overall, if there would be any advice to give before listening to this album, it would be to listen to the lyrics. Glass Animals found a new emotional level on this album and it needs to be experienced for its meaning, as well as its musical quality and creativity. Check out their website where they also give a cute list of instructions of things to do when listening to each song.