Longstanding Liverpudlian five-piece The Coral have been keeping themselves busy recording their latest studio album “Butterfly House”. Recorded in 2 venues over the last two years, this album marks the first released since the departure of guitarist Bill-Ryder Jones. Eager to showcase their new material, the band have interspersed their recording sessions with single releases, tours, and festival gigs to assess reception.
Butterfly House doesn”™t take its time to get started, and within what feels like three seconds, the vocals for the album”™s opener More Than a Lover are underway. Immediately, the sound encompasses the typical guitar work that followers of The Coral would be expecting. Seamlessly moving into Roving Jewel, the album continues in the same vain. The flowing guitar works fit perfectly under the customary vocal stylings of James Skelly.
In a manner akin to the notorious Arctic Monkeys”™ latest album “Humbug”, the more down tempo tracks in the album perhaps feel a little out of keeping with their typical style. You may notice the overall presentation feels more mature, but don”™t let this put you off – there are plenty of positives within. The title track Butterfly House kicks off with subtle guitars, followed by harmonious vocals reminiscent of the much favoured Simon and Garfunkel. As the track develops, the layering and thorough production values allow a steady build to an almost unexpected climax. There are plenty of tracks where you may almost picture yourself strutting down the street, whistling away to yourself. Particularly with tracks like Falling All Around You and Into the Sun. The cheeky upbeat riffs demonstrate that cheerful summery feel The Coral are known for.
Altogether, the album initially feels a touch more serious than some of their previous releases. The sceptics among you will perhaps question the band”™s direction, but what they manage to convince is that they are far from past it. There is still plenty of variety in this album. As with many long term multiple release bands, a new album may not give that instant gratification you might be expecting and at 42 minutes, hardcore fans may feel a little short changed. Bear with it though, as on repeated listening it is easy to become accustomed to the more mature sounds and ideas in the material. The Coral”™s overall sound may have changed slightly, yet the essence of what gives them their individuality remains. Butterfly House manages to maintain the characteristic catchy guitar work, and vocal sound that fans have grown to love over the years. Give this album time, it is most definitely a grower. The verdict? A respectful