Stockholm, Sweden based The Royal Concept have just released their sophmore EP titled Smile. The follow up to 2013's Royal EP finds the supremely talented Swedes adding in more dance rhythms this time around, fueling their electro aided indie rock sound even further that has garnered them praise and adoration from fans and critics alike.
The disc gets off to a roaring start with the disc's title track, a high energy sing along that introduces the amazing lead vocals of frontman David Larson who adds a great deal of energy and charisma to the band that has a high energy dance element that has become their trademark, and is especially evident when you check them out live. "Fashion" is another dazzling number that continues our dance odyssey, bringing in some stylish numbers from everyone in the band, including some amazing drum work from Frans Povel that makes this track in particular zoom straight to the top of the startosphere in terms of energy and sheer enjoyment that it provides for everyone involved. My favorite track off the effort is "Higher Than Love", a radio ready jam that immediately breaks down the walls containing the group, and allows them to explode off the musical page with each member performing at the highest level possible. Bassist Magnus Robert adds in a groove laden texture that is just plain indelible and unable to be denied at this point, while guitarist Filip Bekic takes in the excitement and sheer enjoyment around him, and feeds off the creative juices of everyone around him to create a truly magical and special number right off the bat. "Hurricane" gets us ready for the conclusion of the album with more varied musical textures abound, and a slightly different musical wavelength that still retains the dance elements from the previous track, but goes about it at a slightly different angle that also showcases the band's diversity and stature that is just unparalleled at this point. We wrap up the album with "Just Wanna Be Loved By U", a downtempo number that slows everything down to create a truly special sing along number that wraps everything up, and shows off the group's sentimental side that we were just all waiting to see until now, and can't help but to be amazed and fall in love that much more with the band and everything that they stand for.
These guys have touched me in a very deep and profound way, going back to when I first saw them in concert a year ago at Royale in Boston where they performed with Switchfoot. It was literally one of the top 3 concerts I've ever been to in my lifetime, with their electric stage presence and friendly banter in between sets that made me love them even greater than I already had to that point. The songs sounded even better live, with audience participation carrying the songs to places never before dreamed of. I've loved the band immensely from the start, and this new effort seals the deal on this group that has changed my life and altered my perception of what music feels and sounds like.
In conclusion, an amazing and top notch effort heard forth by The Royal Concept, a band that has frequently drawn comparisons that they're a love child of The Strokes and Phoenix, but they have their own unique and dynamic personalities to go along with it that gives them their own identity and sense of purpose that has made them who they are today.
- Higher Than Love
- Just Wanna Be Loved By U