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Music Review: CALM by 5 Seconds of Summer


The Australian pop-rock band 5 Seconds of Summer released their fourth album, “CALM,” on March 27. The album was supported by five singles: “Easier,” “Teeth,” “No Shame,” “Old Me” and “Wildflower.”

“CALM” is a sonically interesting collection of songs that keeps its tonal balance as one song after another reaches the listener’s ears.

The finished product is without any filler, showcasing the band’s well-oiled ability to write a good song in their pop-rock wheelhouse while also demonstrating their catalog’s diversity.

Highlights

1. “Easier”

The first single released, this track has a beat reminiscent of an 80s video game and a catchy falsetto chorus, which leads to it having a wonderful groove.

2. “Wildflower”

This is probably my favorite song on the album. It’s an addictive pop tune with lovely harmonies and synth to spare, and the booming drumbeat gets it stuck in your head.

3. “High”

A beautiful ballad to close off the album, the crackling vinyl in the background along with a smooth acoustic riff and Hemming’s vocals contribute to a great track that ends the album on a high note.

Additionally, the album’s opening track “Red Desert” and the gritty “Teeth” are other favorites of mine on this record.

Background

5 Seconds of Summer (also known as 5SoS) was formed in Sydney, Australia in 2011. Originally, the group consisted of singer Luke Hemmings, guitarist Michael Clifford and bassist Calum Hood, as the trio went to Norwest Christian College together.

The band’s music career started when they began posting covers of popular songs on Hemmings’ YouTube channel.

The lineup became complete in December of that year, when drummer Ashton Irwin joined the band.

Signing a deal with Sony/ATV Music Publishing, they released their debut extended play, “Unplugged,” in June 2012.

In 2013, 5SoS accompanied One Direction on their Take Me Home Tour. After this, they played a tour in Australia. All dates for the Australia tour sold out quickly.

At this point, they signed with Capitol Records. Following the release of three more EPs, 5SoS released their self-titled debut studio album in July 2014 and embarked on their first headlining tour, the Rock Out With Your Socks Out Tour.

The second studio album by 5SoS, “Sounds Good Feels Good,” was released in October 2015. After their promotional tour entitled 5SoS III, the band released “Youngblood,” their third studio album, in June 2018.

Before the release of their single “Easier,” the band left Capitol and signed with Interscope Records.

The name of the album, “CALM,” is an acronym of the band members’ first names. That name translates to the album’s overall sound, subdued but not mellow.

It’s a cohesive production that effectively demonstrates the band’s ability to craft a catchy pop-rock song, and there aren’t any songs on here that I’d skip.

I’d definitely recommend giving “CALM” a listen.



Maxwell Patton

Wright Life Reporter