July 5, 2021 Crowded House – Dreamers Are Waiting (Album Review)
Dreams are indeed not over! Catapulting to commercial popularity in the late ’80s with the strength of the Neo-acoustic single “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” and trickled into the ensuing decade via Alternative Rock staples such as “Locked Out” and “Four Seasons in One Day,” Crowded House are back with new dreams to wield.
Coming together out of Melbourne, Australia back in 1985, Crowded House emerged upon the conclusion of the successful New Zealand band Spilt Enz. Then, after four successful albums, in 1996 Crowded House also broke up. In 2006, Neil Finn (lead vocals, guitar, keyboards), Nick Seymour (bass, backing vocals), and Mark Hart (guitar, keyboards), with new Drummer Matt Sherrod, reconvened and consequently released two records more–2007’s Time on Earth and 2010’s Intriguer–then became inactive once again.
Released on Friday, June 4, 2021, via BMG, Dreamers Are Waiting is the result of last year’s reunion of Finn and Seymour, after another full decade hiatus. Joining the duo this time are Finn’s sons, Liam (guitar, vocals, drums) and Elroy (drums, vocals, guitar, keyboards), as well as Mitchell Froom (keyboards).
The new offering is definitely a breath of both fresh and familiar air amidst the still ongoing pandemic. It opens with the breezy, subtle swing of “Bad Times Good.” This is then followed by “Playing with Fire”–a mildly distorted rocker–and the jangly midtempo “To the Island.”
Moving on, the semi-acoustic “Sweet Tooth” is a welcome throwback to the band’s ’90s heyday. However, definitely among the standouts is the upbeat and melodic “Whatever You Want,” while a couple of airy and relaxing tracks then pulsate in the form of “Show Me the Way” and “Goodnight Everyone.”
An apt mid-album thumbs-up, “Too Good for This World” is a dip into Crowded House’s Folk Rock roots, as well as the following “Start of Something.” Then there is “Real Life Woman”–a further dive into starry, piano-oriented balladry. Meanwhile, a sunny, happy song, “Love Isn’t Hard at All,” then struts in until Crowded House wraps up its latest album with another piano-led romantic song, “Deeper Down.”
While the world is yet to return to a considerable semblance of normalcy, regard Dreamers Are Waiting as Crowded House’s lucky seventh and let it be a part of your spiritual healing process. For this reason, Cryptic Rock gives Crowded House’s long awaited return 4 out of 5 stars.