‘Crisis Fest’, the last preview of Sunflower Bean’s new album ‘Twentytwo In Blue’, was a rousing call-to-arms (or a call to put them down, more specifically), with lyrics like “2017 we know / Reality’s one big sick show” laid over absurdly catchy, crunchy classic rock guitars and an insatiable groove. On its follow-up ‘Twentytwo’, Julia Cumming opts for a more gentle form of attack. It turns out to be just as potent.
“We could live inside a place where we’d never have to face / All the people who disgrace us and make us hide our face,” she laments, constantly craning her neck to search for the greener grass. Then comes the chorus, an emotional barrage delivered in whispers. “I do not go quietly into the night that calls me, even when I’m alone,” she sings, recalling Dylan Thomas’ gorgeous, powerful poem ‘Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night’, intentionally or not. It’s a gorgeous, quiet act of defiance, and one that speaks volumes, as well as representing the feelings and worries of those growing up in a political climate they didn’t choose.
While ‘Crisis Fest’ dealt in finding resolution through fist-pumping and dancing in equal measure, ‘Twentytwo’ shows that Sunflower Bean’s continued attacks against injustice can be transmitted in many forms, all of which prove as devastating and affecting as each other.