After immense success with their first album, The Lumineers’ sophomore release, “Cleopatra,” continues the peaceful, catchy acoustic-folk that brands them while also bringing the band more into their own.
The album's three singles — “Ophelia,” “Cleopatra” and “Angela” — are quirky, creative songs that foreshadowed the great album that released on April 8.
The band's second album starts off strongly with “Sleep on the Floor.” As the song begins with a slow, commanding beat and Wesley Schultz’s unique voice, all of The Lumineers’ fans can breathe a big sigh of relief. “Sleep on the Floor” brings us more of the classic sound that we fell in love with. “Gun Song” is another standout on the album for all of the same reasons, which proves that continuing their original sound was the right call.
The first single, “Ophelia,” immediately stands out as the strongest song on the album. With a powerful and catchy beat, The Lumineers prove that they are firmly grounded in the sound that was so well-received in their self-titled debut album. However, their sound develops and evolves throughout the album into a stronger style, showing the creative confidence that is helping them make richer music.
The piano instrumentals in “Ophelia” are both beautiful and chaotic, perfectly capturing the quirky essence of the song and the woman that they sing of. The line “Heaven help a fool who falls in love” further adds to the theme of the song with catchy yet meaningful lyrics.
“In the Light” has a sweet, lighter melody — an element that is missing elsewhere on the album. My only qualm with this album is that the latter half becomes, rather repetitively, a bit sad. After “In the Light,” the album becomes a string of slower and sadder songs. Although all of these songs are pretty and interesting to listen to individually, strung together they come off as one repetitive song, lacking the commanding beats in the first half of the album.
That being said, “Sick In The Head” deserves credit. With lyrics such as “People say I’m no good/ Write me off, oh yes they should/ f--- ‘em they’re just sick in the head,” the song is quietly and deeply intimate.
“Patience,” an entirely instrumental song played on the piano, is a good, short transitional piece in the album. It offers a soft and brief break between the deep lyrics of other songs — a time to collect your thoughts.
On the whole, “Cleopatra” doesn’t disappoint. The Lumineers take this opportunity to both solidify and strengthen their sound with a thoughtful album, with each song transitioning well to the next. Although the latter half of the album is heavy on slow, sad songs, the rest of “Cleopatra” overshadows this with commanding, catchy beats. The Lumineers’ fans can rejoice that we have more of the indie-folk music that put them on the map and in our hearts.