Review: Lawson – Perspective

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This new album shows just how much the band has progressed musically in the last 4 years, bringing in a contemporary electronic edge that will satisfy fans of their breakthrough pop-rock material.

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After the success of debut Chapman Square in 2012, Lawson’s returning effort has been a surprisingly long time coming, and Perspective brings a very different approach. Though both albums have a gentle pop-rock feel, this new one introduces an electronic edge that results in a collection that is far more upbeat than the last. “Chapman Square was about losing love, Perspective is about finding it,” says frontman Andy Brown. “The band has been through a lot over the last couple of years. These incredible life changing moments have made us who we are today, this is our perspective.”

Preceding the release of Perspective was a handful of bright singles, including The new album features a few singles that the band has already released such as ‘Money,’ written when the band toured in a van before finding careers; ‘Roads,’ which peaked just outside the top 10 on the UK chart on release early last summer; and latest single ‘Where My Love Goes.’ In a cute clip that once again creates unrealistic expectations for young girls everywhere, its video features the lead singer Brown proposing to his girlfriend in a supposedly genuine scenario. Perhaps unsurprisingly, he describes the track as the most romantic fruit of his songwriting career, and it’s certainly a highlight of Perspective with an infectious chorus, a lovely, tinkly introduction melody, and suitably poetic lyrics.

The relatively unique sound of Chapman Square isn’t entirely elaborated upon through Perspective, and the evident influences from fellow pop-rock ensembles were certainly a surprise given that prior uniqueness. On the first listen, ‘Rio’ made me think I’d pressed play on a Maroon 5 album, and ‘When I’m Old’ would fit right into the repertoire of One Direction in their Zayn Malik days. ‘I Look Anyway’ is certainly more along the lines of personal and fan expectations, yet even that cannot escape elements perhaps most commonly associated with The Script.

If you go into Perspective with a view to finding a carbon copy of Chapman Square‘s charming sound, you may well feel like Lawson has lost the spark that made them special. Yet, when revisiting the album with a more open mind, it genuinely becomes apparent as to how the band has developed its songwriting over their pause. Each song in comparison is lyrically incredible, has purpose, and not one sounds anything like a filler song. In a day and age where it seems like most boybands play on their predominantly female and teenage fanbases to churn out album after album in rapid succession purely to gain fame and money, this perspective is refreshing to hear.

Perspective is out now via Polydor Records

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Head of News 2016/17 for Surge. Second-year Politics and Economics student.

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