British alternative band Bush have arrived in 2017 with a new album titled, ‘Black and White Rainbows.’ This latest release is the seventh studio album for the band’s discography since their debut release in 1994. Throughout the album, Bush delivers a standard alt-rock sound that carries with it an optimistic tone that can be felt from start to finish, even when lyrically the songs lean more towards pessimism. The overall feel of the record could easily be the same feeling one may get from a post-grunge record from the 2000’s, but Bush does allow for some more modern tones to be introduced into the tracks.
The record opens with the track ‘Mad Love‘, a love song that takes on a radio friendly sound with its simple instrumentals and a repetitive hook. It opens the record in a warm but unexciting way, especially when compared to the more upbeat track that follows titled ‘Peace-s.’ Although this track may have more excitement and slightly more of an edge, the lyrics at the end of the track undermine what cleverness the title held when Gavin Rossdale begins to spell out the title, perhaps in a failed attempt to emphasize the point. From there, the listener is introduced by a deep drum machine sounding kick into the song ‘Water‘, a slightly edgier song that depicts finding oneself again after a heartbreak. The next track ‘Lost In You‘ is a pleasant but forgettable love song mimicking the tone and feel of the opening track. The album continues on in the same fashion; pleasant, but forgettable. A few tracks on the album may stand out as slightly different and better than the rest, such as ‘Ray of Light‘, ‘Sky Turns Day Glo‘, the lead single ‘Dystopia‘ or ‘Nothing But a Car Chase‘, but a listener looking for experimental sounds and more diversity in a record will be discouraged by this release.
Overall, the album is a standard alternative rock release, with Bush giving us more of what we’ve come to expect with the band; Nothing too risky, complex, or challenging, but a pleasant listen and an overall solid sound. The record could be compared to the releases of post-grunge bands such as 3 Doors Down or Daughtry due to its radio friendly sound and that the ‘edginess’ that the album does have, is dulled down to a null. Because of this, the album is able to speak to a broader audience until those listeners wander along to find something with a bit more punch.