Review Summary: Sunny with a chance of clouds over Glasgow.
Ever Nalens must have had one hell of a memorable time during her stay in Glasgow. Not only did it resonate in the creation of A Sunny Day in Glasgow, but even after Nalens departure from the project it was still considered relevant to keep the name. Since its inception, A Sunny Day in Glasgow have been one of the forerunners for dream-pop, with their first two albums being critically praised by both the members of Pitchfork and other critically acclaimed websites. Because of this, Sunny Day in Glasgow have achieved a level of stardom inside the genre that is unparalleled and have built up a loyal, dedicated fan base in the process. It also helps that A Sunny Day in Glasgow have an almost unnatural ability in crafting their sound. Smooth, synth laden hooks have been a staple to Sunny Day in Glasgow and even after multiple member shifts, they are still capable of creating new material almost as if it were a secondhand process; they are just that good.
represents the third album by the Phillie dream-pop band. Following heavily in the footsteps of their previous sophomore album Ashes Grammar, A Sunny Day in Glasgow continue their career forward in Autumn, Again
with another offering of dreamy, casual tunes. Glasgow’s third album also features a new lineup, with the departure of the Daniels’ twins and bassist Brice Hickey being substituted with keyboardist Annie Fredrickson, bassist Ryan Newmyer and drummer Adam Herndon. However, this doesn’t affect the overall sound of A Sunny Day in Glasgow too drastically as each member are more than capable replacements for the previously departed.
The aspect that made A Sunny Day in Glasgow’s previous albums such a joy to listen to is the fact that while the tunes themselves are relaxing, comfortable and almost psychedelic in nature, they invited the listener to get lost in in them. Scribble Mural Comic Journal and Ashes Grammar didn’t so much as beg for my attention insofar as it was already given at the first track. Autumn, Again
is different in that it doesn’t grab your attention instantly, actually it never fully grasps it all throughout. Whether it be from the smooth album-titled opening track, to ‘Fall in Love’ which walks hand in hand with said track, A Sunny Day in Glasgow essentially have used their third album almost as a way for the new member so become comfortable with each other. The underlying problem is that it is apparent that they are already comfortable with each other, the chemistry between members is already there, it is not relevant to play safe. This makes Autumn, Again
an album that bleeds well together but fails to create any lasting impression upon the listener. The cathartic experiences of past albums are tragically absent, though not painfully difficult to experience.
‘Drink Drank Drunk’ does feature classic Sunny Day in Glasgow material that is just as competent as their previous material and it does show off the skills of new vocalist Annie Fredrikson extremely well, yet one classic track in a eleven track album does not make up for the fact that Autumn, Again tends to play through without effect. Their third album shows A Sunny Day in Glasgow content with resting upon the laurels that have been provided to them for their past achievements to the genre. While not overtly a negatively received album, it would not be surprising in Autumn, Again
polarized their fan base in terms of whether or not this is an acceptable album or not for a band as gifted as A Sunny Day in Glasgow.
But maybe that’s just it. Maybe A Sunny Day in Glasgow just get portrayed too highly for their contributions: maybe, maybe not. What is clear is that Autumn, Again
stands as an album that fails to grab the listeners attention yet does not necessarily fall flat on its face. The band itself is still as gifted as ever and there are tracks on their third album that are up to par with their previous releases. No single track glaringly sticks out like sore thumb but no single track is worth too many words to gloat about. To call this a filler album wouldn’t even be proper, as A Sunny Day in Glasgow have clearly put their heart and soul into this album, yet it just seems as if they’re becoming a bit complacent in their status of dream-pop. Autumn, Again
serves as an album that won’t make too many new fans but is acceptable to Sunny Day in Glasgow’s discography. With their new lineup, perhaps A Sunny Day in Glasgow can find the correct equilibrium to create an album that is up to par with their previous albums. Until then we have Autumn, Again
to carry us over.