Today, that Friday feeling came early as Australian band, 5 Seconds of Summer, release their latest album; C A L M. Their fourth album to date, the band announced the album’s release early last month, having already released two singles off of the album – Easier and Teeth – the previous year, and dropping the third single – No Shame – the same day.
With a more synth-inspired vibe; the album is reflective, honest and eclectic. The perfect addition to everyone’s quarantine playlists, here’s a rundown of 5sos’ newest album, track by track. Opening with Red Desert, this is a song we were given a preview of earlier this year when they performed it live. Kicking the album off with this low tempo, but distinctly groovy, danced-inspired track; this perfectly sets the tone and vibe of the album as they go back to their roots, with the theme of Australia running throughout.
The next five tracks take us through all the singles on the album with No Shame, Old Me, Easier, Teeth and Wildflower. Track 2, No Shame, takes it back to classic 5sos pop-rock roots, although with some added synth vibes; and is reminiscent of tracks like their hit single She Looks So Perfect. This track is light, yet by no means superficial, and discusses the infatuation modern society has with fame and fortune. The next track, Old Me, can be seen as an antidote and juxtaposition to No Shame. This low-tempo, alternative-pop track, is all about taking it back to what’s real and authentic. Old Me is all about thanking your past self and remembering your past – all that’s happened and all the mistakes you made; and accepting and being grateful for that, as it is a part of who are and has led to you getting to where you are now. Bass heavy, with rock and synth influences; Easier came about because of “a growing attention to industrial rhythm within the band”, and is all about debating whether or not to stay in a toxic relationship. Another catchy track with an infectious baseline, this is another one from CALM that you’ll definitely have stuck in your head. We then have Teeth, which takes a much darker turn, but is still just as addictive and bass heavy. Featured on the soundtrack to the third season of 13 Reasons Why; Teeth is all about detailing the dark highs and lows of a relationship, which is reflected in the darker and more sultry vibe we hear on the track. Calum described Teeth as “my perfect balance of finding vulnerability with aggression”. Wildflower was released in the run up to the album, just two days before; and was described by the band as “a Frankenstein of everything [they] love about music”. An up beat, almost synth-pop track; this is definitely a perfect song to kick off the summer with. Dominated by the vocals of Luke and Calum, with some addictive harmonies; this one is about finding that person you always want to be with, and how you love everything they do.
Moving on to track 7, we have Best Years. Here, as we get into the latter half of the album, we see an overall switch up to a more instrumentally led, and slightly more subdued sound. Best Years is a true pop-rock ballad that is all about the romance, and is a real feel good track. While quarantining, and in the lead up to the album’s release; Luke kindly blessed our timelines and our ears with a live version of the track, which sounded absolutely stunning stripped back. Up next is Not In The Same Way; described by the band as “a chaotic love story of the early days in a relationship and trying to figure out your counterpart”. This is mirrored in the chaotic vibe of the melody, with it constantly switching from upbeat, to mellow; and the genre being a constantly changing blend of pop, rock, electronica and dance. The next track, track 9, is Lover Of Mine. A change from Not In The Same Way, this track is much more forlorn and heartsick, and is a beautiful piano-based ballad. This is followed up by the angst ridden, but slightly more high energy track Thin White Lies; which sticks with the theme of self reflection and discovery. Lonely Heart, takes it back to another beautiful slow ballad, although with a catchy high-tempo chorus. With vocals being the real centrepiece of this track, it is another angst-ridden song; focusing on themes of love and romance.
Easier came about because of “a growing attention to industrial rhythm within the band”5sos on Easier – Rolling Stone
Ending on a high note, we have the appropriately named track, High. A gentle, instrumentally led track to play us out; as the final track comes to an end, you’re left with a feeling of calmness and tranquility. And coming to the deluxe version of the album, it features three extra live tracks; versions of their singles Teeth, Easier and No Shame, live from the vault.
With highs and lows, some stunning melodies and irresistible pop tracks; CALM has a little something for everyone, and will definitely be one you’ll have on loop for a while. Overall, CALM is an incredible album, taking us into 5sos’ new era of music; and I hope you’ve enjoyed this track by track break down. If you have, then make sure to give it a download, and stream it on Spotify.
Keep up to date with 5 Seconds of Summer on social media @5sos