Glaswegian rockers Glasvegas write tunes as epic and awe-inspiring as the Scottish highlands themselves. But after extensive touring for their 2008 self-titled debut album, including several tours of the US, they decided last year to begin work on their second album right here in Santa Monica, California. A coincidence that they should write their follow-up album down the street from KCRW, one of the first radio stations to support their early recordings? Maybe. But we like to think they felt at home in the KCRW environs and knew they had mates in the neighborhood.
In any case, the sunny climes of Southern California seem to have seeped into their new record, EUPHORIC /// HEARTBREAK \. Modeled after the UK brand of melodramatic pop song perfected by the likes of U2 and Echo & the Bunnymen, the glistening melancholy of Glasvegas’ breakthrough debut is strengthened by a dose of bright sonic optimism that beach living seems to help foster. James Allan’s sometimes aching, sometimes soaring vocals anchor the shimmering guitar-and-keyboard-based tunes, keeping them from utterly drifting off into the West Coast sunset. And like the best of albums, the dynamic parade of 11 songs ebb, flow and crest like an ocean wave (which is also the inspiration for the forward and backward slashes in the album’s title).
Bookended by atmospheric spoken word pieces (including a brief message from Allan’s own mother), the album is stocked with single-worthy tunes, from the salutary “The World Is Yours” to the throbbing “Lots Sometimes” to the album’s actual first single, “Euphoria, Take My Hand.” And if the opportunity to sample this entire new album weren’t special enough, KCRW is proud to be presenting an exclusive stream of the James Rutledge remix of “Euphoria, Take My Hand” as an additional treat right here. Definitely more euphoria and less heartbreak for fans near and far.
EUPHORIC /// HEARTBREAK \ will be available to stream on demand from April 4 through May 3, 2011. The album will be digitally released on Tuesday, April 5, 2011.
James Rutledge remix of “Euphoria, Take My Hand"
Artist website: www.glasvegas.net
01. Pain Pain, Never Again
02. The World Is Yours
04. Shine Like Stars
05. Whatever Hurts You Through The Night
06. Dream Dream Dreaming
07. Stronger Than Dirt (Homosexuality Pt2)
08. I Feel Wrong (Homosexuality Pt 1)
09. Euphoria, Take My Hand
10. Lots Sometimes