Grouplove sweeps the competition with "Big Mess"

In 2011, the Los Angeles-based band Grouplove introduced the world to their hit single, “Tongue Tied,” and 1 millionpurchases later it went Platinum in the United States.  On their next album, Grouplove came out with “Ways To Go” which is a high-energy synth track that earned radio play.

Grouplove has been making an impact in the indie rock scene for a few years now, so it’s no surprise that their third studio album has quite a few hard hitters on it.

The band is made up of Christian Zucconi, Hannah Hooper, Andrew Wessen, Ryan Rabin and Daniel Gleason. Multiple members work on vocals, but Zucconi and Hooper are mostly heard in their songs.

Grouplove released their 11-track studio album “Big Mess” on Sept. 9. The album can be purchased on iTunes or streamed from Spotify or YouTube.

The first track off“Big Mess” is called“Welcome To Your Life” which sounds like the romantic, feel-good anthem you have found yourself wishing for. Grouplove’s unique use of synth gives the song a pop element that makes it easy to listen to. “Welcome To Your Life” was their first single off of “Big Mess.”

By Grouplove’s third song, things start to slow down. “Standing in The Sun” starts as a mellow acoustic phrase that picks up at the chorus. The lyrics themselves carry a depressing tone, but the song sounds uplifting.

Grouplove found a way to balance their previous mix of pop and indie with a new wave of mellowed out tracks with a meaning.

“A long time to feel young/ short time to get old,” sings Christian Zucconi, Grouplove vocalist. 

“Enlighten Me” is a heavy synth pop track that touches on the internal struggle of aging and disassociation.

The fifth trackis called “Good Morning” and features an intense electric beat and Hooper’s voice more specifically than the rest of the album.

A track that stands out is “Traumatized.” This song immediately adopts more of a surf-punk vibe, especially with the few lines of screaming Zucconi does. Although this song does not blend in with the rest of the record, it’s refreshing to hear Grouplove bring in a different, heavier sound.

Another song that stands out is “Cannonball.” This song is very high energy with a faster tempo and heavier instruments; something unlike what has been heard from Grouplove before.

The album closes with “Hollywood,” which calls out the Los Angeles attitude towards creating art. “Hollywood just talks the talk, making movies round the clock,” sings Zucconi.

“Big Mess” is an album for any season. It consistently provides an easy tune with deeper meaning if you listen close enough. Grouplove has had their fair share of tours; they have opened for Florence + The Machine, The Joy Formidable, Young The Giant and co-headlined a tour with Foster The People.

In 2011, Grouplove played the South-By-Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas and had filmmaker and director of three of their music videos, Jordan Bahat, document their time there. The documentary is called “Bloom” and can be found online on Bahat’s website.

Since they started as a band in 2009, Grouplove has undergone many changes. Over the course of three studio albums, change in sound is expected. “Big Mess” may not be exactly what traditional Grouplove fans were hoping to hear, but the album delivers something new and progressive.

Grouplove will be touring September through January to support their new album, “Big Mess.” The tour will take them all over the U.S. and a few places in Europe. The band will play at the Fox Theatre in Oakland on Oct. 6.