Be Your Drug
Move To San Francisco
Wasted On You
The Things We Knew Last Night
Call Your Name
Love You More
I really like the idea of splitting an album into two parts with different emotional states attached to them. Circa Waves have a pretty good discography to their name too and although not everyone has taken to their differing sonic across the years, I’ve really enjoyed the way this band have grown from beachy-chilled vibes to harder guitar riffs in Different Creatures. Last year’s album What’s It Like Over There felt like an attempt to reflect on the band’s journey, with some really nice tracks that, while not all that memorable, did well to anchor the band to a new chapter. This year however, Circa Waves throws something different into the mix – a scheduled two-part album release aptly named Happy/Sad.
Happy is exactly what it says on the tin – a collection of uplifting, feel-good tracks. There’s a combination of the band’s early work here, including songs that take inspiration from T-Shirt Weather and bring back that faster tempo that made the band so endearing all those years ago. Complimenting that nicely are harder riffs that harmonically work with the slower tracks to deliver a head-bopping 7 track LP.
The track selection and progression of this mix is really well worked here too, beginning with last year’s single “Jacqueline”. This catchy, vocal-heavy track works well to start the album off on an uplifting note before cranking the temperature up for “Be Your Drug”, a song that feels very similar to “Wake Up”, one of my favourites from Different Creatures. This ultimately works to anchor in “Move To San Francisco”, another vocal-heavy song with lyrics that are sure to get stuck in your head. The rest of the album returns to the faster tempo before slamming on the breaks and allowing an acoustic guitar and strings to slow things down and bring a much more reflective feel to “Love You More”, a song that ultimately acts as a taster for Part 2 of this LP to drop later on in the year.
While there isn’t anything particularly groundbreaking here, the album itself is a lot of fun and chock full of some really catchy records. This compilation of uplifting songs works surprisingly well to bring everything together and I’m intrigued to see what part 2 has in store for us. If you’ve been a fan of the band in the past, this is a pretty good album to get into and while not everyone has enjoyed the progression this group have made over the years, I like their current confident sonic and style. While the summer feels like a long way away in England right now, Circa Waves’ Happy should be enough to warm you up while you wait.
Verdict - 7.5/10