michael gallucci

ALBUM REVIEW — FLORENCE + THE MACHINE

In album review on 10/27/2011 at 11:03 am

Florence + the Machine

Ceremonials

(Universal Republic)

When Florence Welch unleashed her debut album Lungs a couple of years ago, there was some, but not a lot of, indication that she might be on to something with her witchy-woman howls and indie-torch-goth mashups. There were fewer suggestions, however, that she would make an album as tremendous as Ceremonials. Florence + the Machine come out swinging on their second record, pushing forward through the flurry of voices, pianos, and rolling drums that drive “Only If for a Night.” It only gets better: “Shake It Out”’s massive hook, the pop takeover of “All This & Heaven Too,” and “Spectrum”’s medieval tribal bounce. Welch can come off like a British Stevie Nicks at times, with her flowing robes and lyrics that turn relationship dramas into spiritual dilemmas. But she’s a genuine force on Ceremonials: blustery, dominating, and powerful. 

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