Mumford & Sons have abandoned their signature folk sound and have picked up a more pop based sound. On their second album, the band hinted at becoming more mainstream pop with the song “I Will Wait” but they didn’t abandon their banjos altogether. On this album, there isn’t a banjo in sight. This can be both bad and good. It’s bad because this is the sound that fans love, good because they are adapting their sound and trying out something new. All in all, I’d say this new sound works for the band.
“Tompkins Square Park” is a feel good song that really shows off Marcus Mumford’s voice. He doesn’t have any banjos to hide behind, his voice is front and center. The lyrics aren’t all the unique and literary like some of the bands earlier songs have consisted of. Instead, it seems to take a small shift as well. The lyrics are still just as catchy, but now they are more backseat to the new sound. However, I really love this lyric in this particular song. “If only things were black and white, ’cause I just want to hold you tight.” Simple yet still effective.
“Believe” is a fun song that is so far one of the most popular songs off of the album. Again, Marcus is carrying the song with his wonderful tone and range in his vocals. The lyrics aren’t half bad either. “Preset all you’re pretty feelings, may they comfort you tonight.” These are lyrics that people can relate to and are themes that have been previously introduced in their songs. The theme here is a broken relationship and trying to figure out what’s next in life.
I couldn’t skip over the next track “The Wolf” because it’s another big hit that’s emerged from this new release already. Marcus sounds a lot like Bono in this song. In general, he sounds like a rockstar instead of the folk singer that he typically sounded like in the two last albums. This is a track that you listen to because of the music that’s loud and fun to dance to. This song in particular is extremely easy to get lost to.
The title track “Wilder Mind” is actually a song that struck me due to the beautiful lyrics. The song isn’t too loud and rock, but it’s still more pop-rock than folk. One particular lyric that stood out to me was, “You sleep so sound with your mind made up, drinking from your cup of broken ends.” This just brings a lot of imagery to mind and I love the general sound of the track.
“Snake Eyes” is a song that has that stripped back Mumford & Sons song at the beginning, and it gradually builds into a stomp your feet rock song. Like most of the songs on this album, the music is really key into the general sound that the band is bringing it’s listeners. “We had it tonight. Why do we always seek absolution? It’s in the eyes! I can tell you will always be danger.” It’s a genuinely good and catchy memorable song.
I think that Mumford & Sons adapting their sound to a more pop and rock vibe is the best approach they could’ve taken. Audiences would’ve gotten tired of their banjos if they kept them and while some are upset that they abandoned them altogether, it was for the best. With this new album, my prediction is that this already well-respected and loved band is going to take the world by storm and become even more popular!