ARTIST : THE NAKED AND FAMOUS

ALBUM : RECOVER

LABEL : AWAL

RATING : 9.5/10

WORDS : CHRIS PRENATT

Since forming in 2007, New Zealand based indie electronic darlings The Naked And Famous have been dishing out catchy tunes crafted to grab your ears and give you a good time. In 2010, they gifted us their debut record Passive Me, Aggressive You, which featured some of their most well-known songs “Punching In A Dream” and “Young Blood” thus allowing the band to thrive across the globe. 

Fast forward to 2019 and now the band has grown to become a full-fledged one to becoming a duo with the departures of drummer Jesse Wood and longtime keyboardist Aaron Short. Usually a massive lineup change leads to the end of the band, but somehow, Alisa Xayalith and Thom Powers, have done the complete opposite of that. Instead of bowing out, they created Recover, their fourth album with two simple messages: survive and adapt. 

Xayalith and Powers have turned this roadblock into their greatest strength, showing that it takes more than that to kill The Naked And Famous

Clocking in at less than 50 minutes long, the 15 songs that make up their first outing as a duo has them singing about surviving while chill club beats and upbeat electronica carries them into uncharted territory. While it doesn’t sound like the band who a mere decade ago graced us with “Young Blood”, this new era is quite the treat. Xayalith and Powers have turned this roadblock into their greatest strength, showing that it takes more than that to kill The Naked And Famous. 

This new poppy version of The Naked And Famous is a welcoming change from their past efforts. Xayalith’s voice was born to sing in this style, and that can be easily found in the opening track, “Recover”. Her soft voice sends chills down your spine when she and Powers sing, “I can regain myself and recover.” The new tone also fits in well with the other 14 songs like 

“Everybody Knows”, where Xayalith nearly goes Teenage Dream era Katy Perry on us. And the instrumentation on that track is so freaking good. And speaking of instrumentation, Recover’s shortest song “Echoes In The Dark ” is hella groovy and will get you dancing for the full 55 second runtime. 

Recover has The Naked And Famous bouncing back hard, showing us they’re not going out just yet. They still have some fight left in them to survive in the music world, and they’ll be damned if everything they’ve worked on for the past 13 years goes to waste

Recover is a record that has no bad tracks, with each one improving on the past song. Some of the highlights off the record include “Death”, a slow song where Powers get his moment in the spotlight. The Carly Rae Jepsen/Charli XCX-esque “Bury Us” is destined to be a sleeper hit. “(An)aesthetic” is so chill that it could rival those ASMR videos on YouTube. And that is just the tip of the iceberg. 

Overall, Recover has The Naked And Famous bouncing back hard, showing us they’re not going out just yet. They still have some fight left in them to survive in the music world, and they’ll be damned if everything they’ve worked on for the past 13 years goes to waste. This change is gonna ring in a whole new era for the two, and their future seems to be nothing but bright. Shine on, you crazy diamonds.

Recover is out now!

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