LEAGUES – Alone Together

3 years ago Nashville-based indie rockers LEAGUES burst onto the music scene with their full-length debut You Belong Here. The album didn’t immediately make waves upon its January release, but over time it did help the then-trio make a name for themselves, and by December they found themselves on quite a few year-end lists. Soon writing began for a follow-up, but right before things seemed to be finished, Thad Cockrell and Jeremy Lutito, now just a duo after the departure of third member Tyler Burkum, decided to scrap what they had and start over completely from scratch. Their end result was the 11-track offering Alone Together.

The record opens with “Lipstick Coffee,” the upbeat single which epitomizes the term “electro-rock,” thanks in part to a fantastic recurring riff, particularly prominent in the song’s bridge. The album’s lead single, “Dance With Me,” immediately follows this up with an unbelievable summer vibe before stepping aside for “Young Lovers” and the foot-tapping “New Language.” Over the course of Alone Together, the duo tends to maximize the endings of songs. From the jungle-esque finish in “New Language,” to the short-lived intensity in “Slow and Steady,” to the searing guitars of “Walking to a City” to close out the record, LEAGUES offers a fine sense of resolve throughout much of their latest.

It’s not just the endings of songs that shine through, though. Whether they’re effortlessly blending piano with electronics in “New Money,” showing off the bassline in “Greedy Man,” or bringing the dancey, disco-like feel to an even nastier electronic rhythm in “Mad Mad Fever,” Cockrell and Lutito make their case that Alone Together was worth the wait. There are certain points on their sophomore effort which seem to be lacking – for one, some of the songs have a standout element, but it’s not enough to make the song stand out overall. Additionally, there isn’t quite the same lasting effect to every song like there was to You Belong Here. Songs like the title track and “Carry Each Other” are prime examples of this.

That said, Alone Together is still a fun, bouncy release that is bound to put you in a good mood. Fans of LEAGUES’ debut will without a doubt enjoy this follow-up, even if not nearly to the degree of its predecessor.

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Score: 3.5/5

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