Walk the Moon Makes the Grade with Infectious Sophomore Album
Issue   |   Wed, 12/10/2014 - 01:27
Walk the Moon's new album is upbeat and fun to listen to.

Since the release of their eponymous debut under RCA records in 2012, Walk the Moon has been on the radar of fans of indie pop and dance-rock alike. The band has enjoyed a considerable amount of success so far with both their independently-released album “I Want! I Want!” and the self-titled “Walk The Moon.” Their newest album, “Talking is Hard,” has proved no different In fact, the album is only two spots below One Direction’s newest effort on the iTunes chart right now, despite the fact that the band released it a week earlier than originally planned.

While playing gigs in clubs around their hometown of Cincinnati, Walk the Moon released their first single, “Anna Sun.” The track caused the band’s popularity to soar, and soon they were performing on late night television shows, at major festivals and as the opening act for the likes of Panic! At the Disco and P!nk.

What has made Walk the Moon so popular in such a short time? It’s probably the infectious beats that support lead singer Nicholas Petricca’s vocals. Every single track on “Talking is Hard” is dance-worthy — the album’s pace doesn’t slow down for a minute. While that may seem worrisome and repetitive, it works effectively. If you aren’t dancing, you’re singing along and that’s what makes Walk the Moon a band to look out for: They’re impossible to ignore.

Track by Track Reviews:
“Different Colors”: The opening track melds dreamy synths with vocals that sound as if Petricca is alone in a large arena. It sets up the entire album well and serves as a great example of what to expect when listening to the other songs.

“Up 2 U”: Just when you think the band has finally decided to slow things down a bit this track transports you into a grungy-sounding chorus composed of only four words: “It’s up to you.” Despite its simplicity, the track is not only one of the best on the album, but it’s also very telling of the band’s versatility.

“Avalanche”: This track transports listeners back to the happy dance-rock world that Walk the Moon is known for. As far as structure, this track is all drums, high notes and synth, so it’s reminiscent of popular 80s hits. With its old school feel and a cutesy love story for its subject, this song is sure to have you dancing and smiling.

“Portugal”: The synthesizers throughout this song sound just like a video game intro, but it’s the chorus that stands out the most. Compared to the other tracks on the album, this one’s chorus is more stripped down with vocals and piano as its main focus.

“Down in the Dumps”: At first listen, the beginning of this song sounds a lot like Panic! At the Disco’s most recent album, “Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die.” It has a similarly heavy amount of electronica and clear, unadulterated vocals. However, Walk the Moon effectively adds their own flair to the track, making everything slightly faster-paced than Panic! would.

“Work this Body”: “Yeah, I’m a work-a-holic, I swear,” Petricca sings just after proclaiming that he will “work this body.” With its fast-paced background instrumentals and Petricca’s flustered vocals, this song is perfect for a quick morning workout or run.

“Spend Your $$$”: If any of the other tracks on this album sounded like an ’80s group’s reunion song, then “Spend Your $$$” sounds like it was ripped directly from the decade. The song is chock-full of dramatic vocals, heavy drums and low synths. There’s also the fact that at some points, the song is reminiscent of Devo’s hit, “Whip It.” The track even features the talk-singing during its climax that so many 80s songs are known for.

“We Are the Kids”: This is the closest thing to a slow ballad on “Talking is Hard.” Coincidentally, this is also the track with the most story-like lyrics. While not a standout on the album, “We Are the Kids” has a great message about positivity.

“Come Under the Covers”: If Walk the Moon were the crooning type, this would be their signature. This song is an anthem for those that want their summer romances to transition into fall. It’s a love song, but not just for couples. “Come Under the Covers” makes you want to sit on rooftops and stare at the sunset with your best friends at the end of the summer.

“Aquaman”: “Aquaman” is simultaneously the oddest and the best track on the album. IT doesn’t sound like the rest of the album, but it fits perfectly anyway. At first, you might find it too slow, or lacking in background electronic sounds, but it doesn’t sound too empty at all. For a closing track, this song is impressive and hints at what Walk the Moon will sound like in the years to come.

Overall, “Talking is Hard” is a great sophomore album. If Walk the Moon fans were concerned about the band losing its infectious charm, they have nothing to worry about. And for skeptics who doubted the group’s talent, “Talking is Hard” is sure to sway them.