For American acapella group Pentatonix, it’s been a bit of a whirlwind year.
Not only did they pick up a Grammy, they also managed to have two albums on the billboard 200 at the same time. Their newest release, ‘Pentatonix’, peaked at number one on the chart, and still currently sits in the Top 10.
This is the first time an acapella group has had this form of mainstream success in both the charts and with awards.
The five piece group consisting of lead singers, Scott Hoying, Mitch Grassi and Kirsten Maldonando along with bass Avi Kaplan and beatboxer Kevin Olusola, have recently released their latest album, ‘Pentatonix’, and for the first time ever it is predominately original tracks, as previously the groups previous five releases have been mostly covers. But how is the new album?
Well the album sticks very strongly to what makes Pentatonix great and unique – the harmonies are still as tight as ever, often creating truly beautiful musical moments, and Kaplan’s bass and Olusola’s vocal precautions still add a dimension that no other modern artist can copy.
Unlike the cover albums which very heavily focused on showing fans what each member of the group could do with mind-blowing individual moments, the new album switches gears slightly, as the fan base they already have are all well aware of each member’s vocal capability. Instead this album focuses on creating an identity and sound to make Pentatonix really stand out and become artists in their own right.
They go for, in the most part, incredibly upbeat songs, bordering on almost eclectic, with a number of different styles and influences.
In large part the album shows off Scott Hoying’s powerful lead vocals, which are really brought out in songs like, Sing, Cracked and New year’s day all of which go back to Hoying’s RnB and Pop routes.
The album however does have diversity, ranging from the former mentioned songs, all the way to songs like, Light in the hallway and Take me home, which are more similar to ballads, focusing on beautiful tempo and harmonies as appose to pure power and range.
Overall the album really gives fans an insight into the artists that Pentatonix want to be all the while sticking to the vocal routes that helped them gain this popularity. For fans new and existing, this album is absolutely perfect and has something for everyone. Even if you don’t like acapella, you would struggle to not be impressed by at least one track on the album.
Overall rating: 9.5/10