Cloud Control's highly anticipated sophomore release Dream Cave is a boundary-pushing album that seeks to shake up the band's poppy sound.
We had quite high expectations for this album, considering the critical success of their debut album Bliss Release. The lead single, 'Dojo Rising', while not as initially as catchy as 2010's 'There's Nothing In The Water We Can't Fight', is a more experimental and floaty track. In fact, the entire album is a bit of a musical trip, filled with weird vocal wobbles and swirling backing tracks.
The whole trippy feel of the album is great. It definitely pushes the boundaries of the band's easy-going dream pop sound, dipping into dark percussion on 'Island Living' and reverting to further exploration of an iconic sound on 'Ice Age Heatwave'. There are beautiful sections within songs where the lyrics and musical craftmanship mould together with delicacy or anthemic vigour or sheer energy, and there is the continual sculpting of the eponymous 'dream cave', with the addition of (sometimes rather odd) drips of water and arching vocals.
Overall, the entire album does a very sensory justice to the cave, and adventures to very exciting places with the sweeping vocals, sweet harmonies, dreamy backing and eclectic percussion. At times, however, it just feels a bit disconnected and wandering into too many different dimensions - in their pursuit of a new sound they seem to have been a bit confused as to which sound that is. However, it is still a very solid release that I can say I did indeed enjoy.