After four years of anticipation since their debut album, The Lumineers are back to release their sophomore album, Cleopatra. The album does not shy away from the staple foot-stomping, tambourine heavy sound that fans became familiar with on their self-titled 2012 release.
Within the first few bars of Cleopatra’s opening track, “Sleep On The Floor”, it becomes very apparent that The Lumineers have not forgotten nor changed the sound that brought them such a great amount of success. “Sleep On The Floor” begins with minimal instruments: a guitar, single drum, tambourine, and Wesley Schultz’s voice. The track’s simplicity is both captivating and inviting. The pauses between Schultz’s vocals provide a foundation for yet another sing-along, similar to “Ho Hey” off of their self-titled album.
Cleopatra’s reverb-heavy sound, especially noticeable on the album’s second track, “Ophelia,” creates an organic and intimate listening experience. The album consistently features Schultz’s delicate yet powerful vocals gently placed over top of comforting chord progressions. This repeated concept in combination with the vintage sounding ambience found on tracks like “Angela” and “Long Way Home” continuously ground The Lumineers in authenticity. Whether it’s listening to Cleopatra on laptop speakers or with headphones, the album manages to make the listener feel as if they are in the same room as the band performing these tracks.
The album provides a medium for listeners to reflect and think deeply about the stories being told. Each song has a beginning, middle, and end; it’s the way that these sections are presented on the album that truly make it a memorable release. The cinematic build-ups found on the track “Gale Song” or the score-ready “Patience” provide evidence that The Lumineers took their time crafting this album. Schultz’s carefully worded lyrics, cellist player Neyla Pekarek’s modern take on a classical background, and drummer Jeremiah Fraites’ keen ear for dynamics have made Cleopatra an album that will receive a large amount of success for its refreshing and organic sound.
Cleopatra is now available via Dualtone Music Group and Universal Music Group.
“Ophelia” taken from Cleopatra can be streamed below: