I went into this album completely unaware of what to expect. I had heard “Doing The Right Thing” the day before picking it up, and I was simply entranced. Daughter’s sophomore album, Not To Disappear is nothing short of entrancing. The album is beautifully atmospheric with a hint of urgency, constantly grabbing your attention at every lovely moment.
As soon as the album begins with the song “New Ways”, the slow and heavy feeling of floating in a purple space invades you. The song builds up from a atmospheric pop song into a slow driven, enchanting ballad filled with layered synths and wailing background noise. “Numbers” follows up, with a minimalist beginning featuring nothing a single, reverberating beat and vocals, before building into an huge, stadium filling indie rock monster. This album is full of eccentric buildups from nothing into a massive wall of noise that garners every sense into one huge sonic experience. Vocalist Elena Tonra commands the attention of the listener, even in the disarray of the entrancing and complex masterpieces this album has to offer, showing off her vocal and songwriting abilities especially in “Alone / With You” and “Mother”. The album isn’t all slow-paced buildups, though. Tracks like “How” and “No Care” are exciting and energetic right from the get-go and carry on as such, giving the album a burst of energy when it begins to drag. “No Care” has a particularly fun section, with guitarist Igor Haefeli bringing out an infectious riff accompanying the driving kick drum, sounding like a Now, Now track. The song also features a great performance by drummer Remi Aguilella, who also shined on the taiko drumming on “Numbers”. Tonra take bass duty on the album, and takes control on “To Belong”, on top of her enchanting vocals. The nearly seven minute epic, “Fossa” begins enchantingly with a Purity Ring reminiscent introduction and evolves into a true indie folk jam, complete with a classic kick-snare pattern and short and sweet guitar licks. “Made Of Stone” closes the album, on a final atmospheric note that sucks you deep into the space you began sinking into at the beginning of the album, as if to provide one last moment of clarity before drifting infinitely into the great unknown.
Daughter has provided an album that has set a precedent for all indie, folk, and pop artists to follow this year, barely two weeks into 2016. The album has a huge presence while maintaining a minimalist attitude in its approach. This group has a huge year ahead of them. This blend of Imagine Dragons’ apocalypse pop and Now, Now’s indie flair came together in the most brilliant of ways. Don’t miss out on this album!