Wildness (Deluxe)

Wildness (Deluxe)

Snow Patrol’s seventh album had a lengthy gestation, for understandable reasons. In the seven years following 2011’s Fallen Empires, frontman Gary Lightbody struggled with alcoholism, depression, and writer’s block. He’s arrived at a better place via psychotherapy, acupuncture, and the unflinching soul-searching that runs through this record. There’s desperation in “What If This Is All the Love You Ever Get?” (“I’m in the ruins too/I know the wreckage so well”) and a heart-stopping vulnerability to “Soon,” an address to his dementia-stricken father. But Wildness marks a path out of, not into, darkness: The new-day optimism of “Heal Me” and “Life and Death” is complemented throughout by a band revitalizing their stadium-ready alt-rock with electronic flourishes and strains of folk and R&B.

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