The “Screen Violence” album era was quite a dramatic undertaking for the Scottish synth-pop band CHVRCHES. This album covers some hard truths and emotional trauma topics. While I feel sure that the trio had a ball stepping into various character situations as they explored feelings of loneliness, disillusionment, fear, heartbreak and regret. It has been two years since they focused on some pretty dark subject matter. So I understand Iain, Martin, and Lauren’s desire to step away from these gritty discussions and reconnect with a soaring alt-pop anthem instead. The band’s new stand-alone track “Over” illustrates this.
Speaking via Instagram, CHVRCHES explained the change in lyrical direction,
“We finished this song (“Over“) over the holidays. The way it explores themes of trying to exist in an escapist dreamscape when life is difficult felt timely, so we didn’t want to wait to put it out”.
Above all, there is no way to not notice that the track is strikingly dreamy and euphoric at the same time. The stellar synth work makes this blindingly obvious. It is not like CHVRCHES to skirt around issues or rely on throw-away style pop song lyrics either. Therefore, they continue sharing authentic, emotive narratives, and the lyrics still have somewhat, dark connotations. A sense of anxiety and feeling at breaking point is evident in the song lyrics.
“Sometimes I just drive till the night turns off my mind. I’m passing cars, and crowded bars never know until I go too far. Confusing faith and fear. Paint a smile from ear to ear. ‘Cause if I blink, I start to think. I feel nothing. I feel everything.”
I don’t blame CHVRCHES for paring back on the music video, given the heavy concepts used in their previous “Screen Violence” album campaign. I appreciate the effects of the neon-lit staging they are seen perched upon while they perform the electrifying anthem. As for the aerial shots. They do add to the overall epicness of this new piece. I am thrilled they are releasing “Over,” and did not keep it back. Also, the band has been around long enough to know timing a musically rousing track release with a tour announcement makes for an effective marketing strategy.
UK Tour Dates – On Sale 9am Friday 3rd March from www.church.es
Rock City – Nottingham 9th June
Barrowland and Ballroom – Glasgow 10th June
Fat Sam’s – Dundee 12th June (Sold Out)