November 8, 2019 The Script – Sunsets & Full Moons (Album Review)
The platinum selling Irish band The Script is back with their latest album, Sunsets & Full Moons, on Friday, November 8th through Sony Music.
Formed in 2007, since that time The Script – Danny O’Donoghue (lead vocals, piano), Mark Sheehan (lead guitar, vocals) and Glen Power (drums) – has amassed 6 billion streams while attaining 30 million single sales, 10.8 million album sales, over 12 million monthly Spotify listeners, and 1.8 million ticket sales. All very large numbers in a modern era where it seems no one is purchasing music anymore, the trio has done it with a unique blend of styles that attract a diverse audience – just listen to hit singles such as 2010’s “For the First Time,” 2012’s “Hall of Fame,” 2014’s “Superheroes,” or 2017’s “Rain” and you will understand the broad appeal. Rooted in Pop, they also combine elements of Hip Hop, Rock, Folk, and piano ballads that have continuously seen them excel from album to album without becoming stale.
Awarding in their homeland of Ireland, their international reach has remained steady through the years and now with their sixth studio album Sunsets & Full Moons they look to making a big impact yet again. Consisting of nine songs that span just over a mere half hour, it might seem a bit short, however, the music leaves behind a much bigger impact than you might first expect. Much like previous work, the lyrics are very personal and more than skin deep for Danny O’Donoghue. Looking back briefly for a more complete understanding, O’Donoghue lost his father around the time of the release of the band’s 2008 debut album. Then, ten years later, he tragically lost his mother as they worked on Sunsets & Full Moons. Even more striking, both his parents passed on Valentine’s Day – a topic covered in regards to his dad with the 2013 song “If You Could See Me Now.”
All this in mind, in may ways Sunset & Full Moons is a unofficial sequel to that 2008 self-titled album due in part to both being birthed during a turbulent time. All quite sad, fortunately The Script always seem to find a way to put a positive twist on every dark story. In fact, each song on this album carries so much hope and strength with beautiful lyrics that are wrapped in soft arrangements, it is one empowering listen.
Opening it all up with the upbeat, danceable “Something Unreal,” on the other end of the spectrum “If You Don’t Love Yourself” is more mellow and smooth, but with just as much pop. With smooth being the keyword here, the rhythmic undertone of the entire album wraps you right about the band’s finger – prime examples are the more acoustic guitar driven “Hurt People Hurt People,” which features a chorus that sticks in your head long after listening or the heartbreaking, haunting single “The Last Time.”
Now, while the music is undeniably mellow, smooth, and almost hypnotizing, there is still so much more to it all. Not overproduced, the songs are very true to life with quality instrumentation and unaffected vocals that make for a very natural progression. That said, there is depth amidst each song that breathtaking – this is evident on the uplifting “Run Through Walls” that will have you feeling you are not alone in your time of sorrow, “Same Time” which will possess you in a almost religious way, or even on the encouraging anthem known as “Underdog.”
A perfect balance of faster and slower songs, The Script have outdone themselves this go around, turning lose and sorrow into a triumphant listening experience. Impressive upon the first time listening through, the depth does not truly unravel in full before a second listen through. Worth every second, Cryptic Rock gives Sunsets & Full Moons 4.5 out of 5 stars.