A Different Kind of Light review
author: quinn bell | A&C writer
Album seems a bit light doesn’t it / Pixabay
Time to light up your life
BRTHR’s newest album, A Different Kind of Light, is a different kind of right. Released Friday, the Stuttgart duo’s second album is thirty-four minutes of pure, chill, laid-back vibes. With tastes of J.J. Cale, Neil Young, Calexico, Van Morrison, and Fleetwood Mac, it’s really good.
Not two seconds into the first song, “One More Night,” the bass and drums start their dance. From there, they chug and chug right to the end of the album. It sits so well: they never leave the pocket and they never stop grooving.
“Harder Each Day,” released as a teaser-single for the album, is reminiscent of Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic.” Although it’s missing the amazing horn parts, the overall feel (and the opening bass line) are almost identical. This is probably the catchiest song on the album, and I dare you not to sing along during the chorus. The mood of the song is also great: life may be getting “harder and harder and harder and harder and harder each day,” but if you can keep singing while you work through it all, you’ll make it. The bass and drums never stop, and neither will you.
“Down the Line” is a dreamy and mood-inducing groove about feeling alone after a mistake and wanting to start again. Here, BRTHR plays with the contrast between ambient, floating guitar and synth pads, and a grounded, solid drum-bass combo; meanwhile, the vocals swim in between, pleading. This is a song to drive to late at night, when you’re out looking for answers. Your focus can be grounded on the road, pushing forward with the bass, while your thoughts and feels can be almost aimless and gentle, floating just out of reach. This line gets me: “The whole damn world is going to pieces / and I just want to find a place where I can find peace at.” Listen to “Tea Cup” next, and you’ll hear where BRTHR has found their peace: in an old tea cup, at the bottom of the sea, in love.
There are a couple of more fun songs on the album, too. “Love Me Like You Do” is a good example, with it’s catchy guitar hook and strong organ chording. Later in the album comes “Waiting on the Day,” an upbeat and optimistic Americana song. The simple lyrics, the easy feel, and the quick familiarity reinforce that things will get better someday, even if life is tough now. Sitting near the end of the album, it’s a well-placed pick-me up.
A Different Kind of Light is a simple, comfortable album. BRTHR doesn’t waste time or effort trying to be fancy. Instead, they focus on giving listeners what they need: consistent beats, careful and beautiful drum fills, calming vocals and lyrics, and a few well-executed guitar licks. With hopeful songs about peace in teacups and the end of hard days, A Different Kind of Light is definitely worth listening to over and over.