Review Summary: “Let it Come Down” is an album fit for certain friends of mine, who spend their free evenings with various substances. Spiritualized continue to convey the feeling of sweet downward spirals with remarkable accessibility.
I have never taken any drugs during my lifetime, and therefore have no idea how the effects of drugs feel. Given my living environment at a university, I often hear stories about the effects of drugs and formulate notions about the effects of drug use on the human body. When I listen to Spiritualized, I arrive as close to my understanding of drug use through their beautiful yet painful harmonies. This is because Spiritualized delivers euphoria during their explosive highs and a bittersweet pain when collapsing into cries for help. Their music simulates a drowning feeling as frontman Jason Pierce demonstrates his internal suffering with relationships, life, and God. “Let it Come Down” is an album fit for certain friends of mine, who spend their free evenings with various substances. However, the album goes beyond appropriateness for individuals under outside influences, as Spiritualized continue to convey the feeling of sweet downward spirals with remarkable accessibility.
Thundering horns that are fitting for signaling the entrance of a king on “I Didn’t Mean to Hurt You” seem at home between Pierce’s laments on “The Straight and the Narrow” and “Stop Your Crying.” Continuity is dynamic and fluid on “Let it Come Down,” which does not stop at flowing throbbing beats guided by blaring horns, but also includes repeated song lyrics that remind the listener of heartbreaking themes. During “Do It All Over Again,” Pierce sings “I love you like I love the sun in the morning.” Later in the album, during “I Didn’t Mean to Hurt You,” Pierce delivers the same lyric, and then adds “I miss you like I miss the water when I’m burning,” before professing his sincere regrets for hurting his loved one. “Let it Come Down” succeeds because it works well as an album, with great continuity and continuing to convey a theme of suffering through the sweetest unconventional means.
Relative to the earlier work of Spiritualized, like “Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space,” and “Lazer Guided Melodies,” Spiritualized creates a louder, more upbeat blast of energy through a collection of over 120 musicians. With their familiar horn and string sections and a new heavenly choir, Spiritualized develops a fresh sensation. It is as if Jason Pierce is standing at the gates of heaven, convincing St. Peter that he is not worthy of entrance, with the aid of angels whose trumpets and voices wisp around the gates’ bars. The composition of instruments allows for the listener to close their eyes and smile under the sinner’s spell, because they know that they also won’t get to heaven in the state that they’re in, but in a way they can accept.
The album is not without energetic moments, reminiscent of “Electricity” from “Ladies and Gentlemen…” with guitars aiming to send flickers of fire around the walls of your room. The opener “On Fire” consists of a piano introduction which sets the tone for the rest of the album, as the choir is presented, horns are envisioned rocking side to side in the hands of robed seraphim, and fuzzy effects skim over Pierce’s voice. Because of the fulfillment received after listening to “Let it Come Down,” one may believe that they really were dancing in heaven. You may not even need the drugs.