Tue 25 Jan 2022

Palace’s ‘Shoals’ turns existential dread into poignant art


The album which turned existential dread into poignant art.

Palace return with their new album Shoals – an album that encapsulates the intense emotions of navigating a pandemic.

The last time we heard from Palace was in 2019, with their second album Life Affair which unapologetically wore its heart on its sleeve. Now, the London alt-rock band are back with another authentic album that goes through the motions.

With the recognisable harmonies of the four-piece, we are dropped straight back into Palace’s universe through the record’s first track ‘Never Said It Was Easy’. The glimmering voice of Leo Wyndham feels hypnotising at first listen, submerging us into the ocean of the band’s iconic sound. We are faced, however, with heavier notes within the record. In contradiction to its title, ‘Gravity’ feels exploratory with its electric undertones, and clinical guitar riffs.

The record is old for its age, like a child that has had to grow up too fast, due to the band’s experiences whilst writing and producing it. With the concept of Shoals birthed from the existential dread and anxieties COVID-19 hit the band with, it feels definitive of turning pain into art. 

Shoals is acceptance of fear and welcomes anxiety like an old friend you’ve previously turned away. The experimental nature of the electro-synth tracks explores the boundless nature music offers, whilst also appreciating the significance of music as an outlet for discomfort. It rides the waves of emotions, high and low, and provides the opportunity to reflect on the lessons we learnt over the past two years.


Don’t miss Palace performing live at O2 Ritz Manchester on Friday 4th Feb 2022.

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