With a slew of high profile guest appearances and visually attesting singles throughout the year, the anticipation for ‘Weird!’ almost threatens to overshadow the record itself.
Yet, with one foot set firmly on genre exploration and another on stadium ready melodies, Yungblud flits in and out of multiple genres and themes throughout his sophomore release.
Opening with the unexpectedly reserved ‘Teresa’, Yungblud trades his snarling vocals in for a subdued and exposed performance. A notable shift from the punk attitude that drove his debut release, the track uncovers a positive and communal outlook whilst hinting at the blurred genre lines of the record.
Following up with a trilogy of singles, Yungblud covers a range of sounds, from the sultry bounce of ‘Cotton Candy’ to the glam rock guitars of ‘Strawberry Lipstick’, yet throughout his distinctive vocal performance ties the two together. Whilst both songs could be expected, ‘Mars’ sees the British singer/songwriter move closer towards stadium rock, with a message that pushes past the familiar melodies and chord progressions of the track.
As the record progresses, things get slightly inconsistent, as tracks such as ‘Superdeadfriends’ explore electronica with a punk rock attitude and an exciting vocal performance sits closely to ‘God Save Me, But Don’t Drown Me Out’. Whilst the single does aim to be a brit rock laden anthem, instead it seems flat.
The same can be said for ‘Love Song’ and ‘Charity’, with both aiming for an anthemic conclusion but sadly falling short. That being said, whilst ‘Weird!’ is an inconsistent record in that regard, when Yungblud hits the mark, he does it well.
As shown in the final cuts, Yungblud delivers on the promise of the past year’s promotion. From the pop-punk hooks of ‘Acting Like That’ to the confessional lyrics of ‘It’s Quiet In Beverly Hills’, he touches on multiple styles but doesn’t lose himself.
With ‘Weird!’, Yungblud does jump through a range of styles with varying results, but even with inconsistencies, the sophomore release does hint at a larger stylistic picture. Regardless, the highlights of the record are sure to be screamed back in unison when they’re performed live, and with a strong lyrical message, Yungblud has delivered a record that will resonate with his audience.