I was introduced to Blue Neighbourhood through the medium of Twitter a couple of months ago, and I’m so glad that I was. I had heard of Troye Sivan from his YouTube career, and back in 2014 I listened to his first single ‘Happy Little Pill’ – which I loved! Unfortunately, I was only obsessed with this song for about a day or two until I lost interest, so at the announcement of a full album I was dubious; however, I was also curious to see whether it would have me as engrossed as the first time…
…And I can safely confirm that it has! Since its release, I have replayed this album countless times, and as a result, ‘Blue Neighbourhood’ has become the soundtrack to my work ethic. The meaningful lyrics and melancholy pulses create such a tranquillity that makes it impossible not to focus – yet you are somehow still fully seized into the depths of the music. Any album capable of this feat is undoubtedly worthy of credit.
A noticeable improvement for Troye can be found in his songwriting skills; whilst the pieces are still chorus-dominated with minimal verse, the lyrics are discernibly more poetic, yet more relatable. Whilst emotive by themselves, Troye’s smooth and passionate voice delivers them with an extra poignancy that touches the soul. The original album also includes 3 featuring artists – the deluxe boasting a grand 5 – which only adds depth and contrast to the meaning of the beautiful lyrics.
The only criticism I have with ‘Blue Neighbourhood’ is a few of the tracks are fairly similar in pace and tone; I found that numerous listens were needed in order to be able to identify the songs as separate entireties. However, this did not take anything significant away from the overall effect of the album, especially if listening to create work atmosphere or for background music on a car or train journey.
Overall, ‘Blue Neighbourhood’ is truly quite stunning; there is simply no hesitation as to why successful artists such as Adele and Sam Smith are singing their praises. Troye’s soulful voice is sublime, bringing a compelling passion to the expressive lyrics and tranquil ambience – a definite must-listen for lovers of artists such as Daughter and Oh Wonder.