Spring King have hit back bigger, harder and better for their sophomore album A Better Life. Following their quite frankly, slept on, debut Tell Me If You Like To the band decided it was time to shake things up. Taking the songwriting responsibilities from frontman Tarek Musa and sharing them among the four piece.
A Better Life takes a lot of what made Spring King popular and adds more depth to it. It’s clear that a lot of the songwriting comes from a different place where a more diverse range of topics are at hand. The artwork takes inspiration from Glass Animals How to Be a Human Being much like Youth Killed It’s What’s So Great, Britain? by using a collection of characters on the cover, each representing different songs or points of view on the album.
Thundering opener ‘Animal’ sets the tone for A Better Life. “‘Animal’ takes its inspiration from our unshakable reliance on technology and how repetitive modern day existence has become. There is a constant tension between human nature and technological progression: we are glued to technology, sometimes not sure how to let go, whilst simultaneously fighting the animalistic, hedonistic urge to unplug and completely lose ourselves.” as Tarek explains. This social critique is accessible and interesting, continuing throughout the album.
‘Let’s Drink’ is less booming thunder than a hailstorm, it’s where Spring King begin to switch gears. This is an introvert’s anthem. A strong bass riff carries the track and the chorus for sure will be a big hitter live. Whereas the genre of other tracks from A Better Life may be a little more ambiguous, this one is indie through and through. ‘Paranoid’ is something special. It’s the first point on the album where the phat bass and melodies are synonymous, taking two strengths of Spring King and merging them perfectly.
‘Us vs. Them’ addresses the social unrest around the fallout of Brexit which only grows more and more relevant as time goes on. Despite the lyrics this song undoubtedly makes you feel cool as fuck just listening to it. Proper banger. The guitar riffs hit the spot just right, the booming drums are spot on, everything comes together just right here. ‘Echo Chamber’ is moody, chugging along toward the fast paced, SOMETHING chorus.
‘Radioactive’ tips the scale, closer to pop to rock while ‘Thicker Skin’ pulls it back again ever so slightly. It’s a meaty song with so many layers to sink your teeth into. The album closes on ‘Thunder’. This is thought provoking and even gentle. It’s a hopeful look over what the rest of the album covers.