by Chey Scott
Yesterday, breakout British indie folk-rock group Mumford & Sons released its much-anticipated sophomore album Babel.
My Facebook newsfeed has been blowing up the last two days with sentiments about the album like: “Officially obsessed with the new Mumford & Sons album. No better way to relax after work than with amazing new music,” and “Listening to the new Mumford & Sons on the way to work :)."
Sure, I’ve listened to (and liked) their stuff before when it’s come on my Pandora stations, but I could never really say I was a real, true fan. Until today.
Prompted by friends’ musings about the new album on Facebook, I hopped on Spotify. In the last hour or so I have listened to the album nearly twice through. It’s really, really good.
The songs on Babel stick to the band’s roots of its first album, 2009’s sleeper hit Sigh No More, which features their first chart-topping single, "Little Lion Man."
The opening title track on Babel features the group’s familiar, bluegrass-esque, rollicking melodies and a thigh-slapping beat, with lead singer Marcus Mumford’s gritty voice belting out passionate, poetic lyrics.
They break things down a bit in the middle tracks, with some slower ballad-style songs: “Ghosts that We Knew,” “Reminder,” and “Lover’s Eyes."
Fans who loved the first album should go absolutely berserk over the crisper and more polished sound of Babel, which, of course, still features Mumford & Sons’ signature, fast banjo picking, vocal harmonies and heartfelt, raw lyrics – everything is just all-around better than before.