Album Review: Two Door Cinema Club – False Alarm

Two Door Cinema Club got its start about a decade ago with the release of their debut album Tourist History. As the Irish trio turns 10 years old, their latest record False Alarm proves that the band is still full of excitement, fun, and experimentation. False Alarm sounds both post-apocalyptic and straight out of the 1980s. It’s a unique and funky album with heavy electronic notes, a killer lead vocal performance, and tracks that continually build off one another. In my opinion, False Alarm is one of the better albums 2019 has seen thus far. 

False Alarm is all about playing with different vocal and instrumental effects, but not to the point that it takes away from the albums message. With the constant manipulation of vocal pitch, well placed electronic arrangements, and sharp percussion, there is never a dull moment on the record. Perhaps what I like most about the album is how the band pairs influences of the past with sounds of the future. This creates an iconic and one of a kind style that can appeal to many different generations. 

On their earlier albums such as Beacon and Tourist History, Two Door Cinema Club produces music with a much more muted style and an in-cohesive message. To me, False Alarm is a good example of the band growing into themselves. There is a clear relationship between all of the songs on the album, a defined and eccentric sound, and strong balance between vocals and music. After 10 years in the making, Two Door Cinema Club understands what they want to say and how they want to say it. 

Not only is False Alarm an important compositional album in music, but also in lyrics. Two Door Cinema Club picks up on various problems associated with the millennial generation and addresses them throughout the album. On the first track, “Once,” songwriter Alex Trimble writes “you’re getting stuck with papers in the magazines. It’s just your luck, strangers living out your dreams.” This lyric notes on society’s obsession with celebrities, media, and materialism. 

Perhaps the most important aspect of the content put out by Two Door Cinema Club is Trimble’s vocals. On this album, he takes on a wider range of influences such as Duran Duran, and David Bowie to pair with the 1980s style of the music behind him. The vocal presence he takes on changes from song to song. The perfect example of this dynamic is Trimble’s electronic, high vocals on “Think” in contrast with his sharp and low vocals on “Satellite.” In my mind, this is characteristic of a strong musician.

False Alarm is an important album for the time which we live in because it asks society to question their decisions by drawing on the beauty of generations before them. You get the musings from the future on tracks such as “Think,” and “Once,” which work together with 1980 period pieces such as “Talk,” and “Satisfaction Guaranteed.” All this is to say that False Alarm is an album for the ages. Universal, groovy, and deep.


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