Wild Beasts – Smother: album stream

Wild Beasts' third album picks up where Two Dancers left off, with songs of love, longing and wanton lust

It's less than a year since Wild Beasts were pipped to the Mercury prize by the xx, but the Kendal band are already back with a new album, Smother. And it seems the relative success of their last LP, Two Dancers, hasn't had a detrimental effect on their sound.

If anything, the band's third album further explores desire, sex and mindless brutality, themes that underpin an otherwise gentle and immaculately arranged record. But Smother offers a more emotional response to lust and longing than its predecessor; Reach a Bit Further, for instance, is a call-and-response track in which singers Hayden Thorpe and Tom Fleming offer each other assurance: "Yes I will do anything that you ask of me." Elsewhere the subtly ebullient Bed of Nails sees Thorpe listing the sacrifices he'll make for his lover whereas Plaything, in which the singer demands they "take off that chemise", is the closest the band get towards wanton fervour.

Smother allows each band member to shine; Ben Little's opaque, dextrous guitar and Chris Talbot's textural, ambient drumming are as prominent as Thorpe and Fleming. It shows the band have confidence in each other, and so they should. While Smother sounds both ambitious and restrained, its overarching quality is of a continually interesting band making rich, engaging music sound effortless.

Smother is out on 9 May through Domino Records. Wild Beasts will be interviewed in this Friday's Film&Music


Rosie Swash

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Wild Beasts: Smother – review
Wild Beasts fine-tune a winning formula on their atmospheric third album, writes Ally Carnwath

Ally Carnwath

07, May, 2011 @11:05 PM

Wild Beasts: Smother – review
A change of direction for Wild Beasts results in album of extraordinary beauty, writes Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson

05, May, 2011 @10:20 PM

Article image
New music: Wild Beasts – Albatross

Michael Cragg: Unlike most comeback singles, Albatross reveals its charms slowly – but reveals a band at the peak of their powers

Michael Cragg

08, Apr, 2011 @3:28 PM

Article image
Björk: bastards – exclusive album stream

The singer has let the likes of Death Grips and Omar Souleyman loose on her Biophilia album – be among the first to hear the results on this new collection of remixes

Guardian music

12, Nov, 2012 @4:53 PM

Article image
Tame Impala - Lonerism: album stream

There's a whole hive of buzz about Tame Impala's new album, and here you can be among the first the hear it

Guardian music

02, Oct, 2012 @11:34 AM

Article image
Low – C'mon: exclusive album stream

Listen to the Minnesota trio's ninth album – their first record in four years


01, Apr, 2011 @12:06 PM

Article image
Grant Hart – The Argument: album stream

Be among the first to hear the new album from the former Hüsker Dü man – and let us know what you think

Guardian music

15, Jul, 2013 @7:00 AM

Article image
Mogwai - Rave Tapes: Exclusive album stream

Stuart Braithwaite introduces the latest Mogwai album, which you can listen to for free with our stream! Let us know what you think ...

14, Jan, 2014 @1:29 PM

Article image
Herman Dune – Strange Moosic: album stream

Tim Jonze: The Parisian duo are back with their 10th studio album – and the songs are as sweet as ever

Tim Jonze

27, May, 2011 @1:39 PM

Article image
Beirut – The Rip Tide: album stream

Let us know what you think of Beirut's comeback record, their first studio album in four years


08, Aug, 2011 @2:37 PM