Disclosure’s new album is “Caracal.” The British EDM duo of brothers Guy and Howard Lawrence rose to international fame with their critically acclaimed debut ‘Settle.’ Have critics found the same delight in their sophomore release? Here’s a roundup of reviews.
Yes, there are albums that are highly anticipated, and then there are albums for which we must add a a superlative or two along with an exponential. This would be one of those albums.
The London-based duo’s brilliant debut album ‘Settle’ received widespread critical acclaim and numerous Grammy and BRIT Award nominations as well as a nomination for the prestigious Mercury Prize in the UK. It also saw ‘Latch’ become a breakthrough hit for one Sam Smith who, back then, was a relative unknown whose now gone on to worldwide success and Grammy Awards.
Now they’ve got a stellar list of guest stars, including The Weeknd, Lorde, Gregory Porter, and Miguel. And yes, they reunite with Sam Smith, too, on the album’s lead single, ‘Omen,’ which saw a video go viral (and which you can see below).
The critics in awaiting the new album also have their expectations as well. Will the duo continue in their EDM territory or will they venture into other genres, and experiment with new sounds? There’s always the danger of repeating one’s success to the point that it becomes formulaic and there’s no artistic growth. And with a sophomore album critics are beyond attuned to those pitfalls.
So what do the critics have to say? Here’s a roundup.
“….”Caracal” doesn’t break new ground the way “Settle” did. Instead, it focuses on taking the Disclosure sound to new heights…..– Newsday
“….It’s looking more and more like dance music was merely the Trojan horse Disclosure used to gain a foothold in the world of pop music. […] Caracal is a transitional record, another step toward Disclosure’s ultimate landing zone. They’re still between kingdoms; it’s only a matter of time before they find a new throne…..” The Verge
“…Disclosure’s sophomore album, Caracal, named after a species of African wildcat, doesn’t go wrong, precisely — it’s less a strikeout than a drawn-out walk. […] Caracal is the kind of effort that diehard fans might convince themselves to appreciate, and then never play again…..” — Billboard
“….Big and bold with smart production touches and melodies to match, this is an album destined for stadiums. How long ’til Jay Z and Rihanna accept the offer to appear on album 3? ….” — Mixmag
“….Though a trio of superstars – Lorde, The Weeknd and Miguel – sprinkle significant stardust, the moments that impress most come on tracks that feature lesser-known artists, proving that when Disclosure lean more towards the underground, they’re that much more compelling….” NME
“….Entering the scene as teenagers, they have fused pop into house, showing a side of EDM that isn’t just beats per minute and extravagant bass lines. They are more composed and the brothers feel more like songwriters than music producers. That’s is what ‘Caracal’ is all about; slow beats and soft melodies for getting your two step on, rather than foot stomping beats. …..” — Contact Music
As the album his the virtual shelves, we’ll see if fans find the same passion for the new release as they did for ‘Settle.’ But it’s no dispute that the album is causing a stir and it’s a stir that, as with their debut, has gone far beyond the familiar haunts of the club scene. Disclosure’s ‘Caracal’ may put them on the map yet again.