Electro-rockers Awolnation have proved to their fans (and doubters) that they are more than their 2011 smash hit “Sail” with the release of their second album’s first single “Hollow Moon (Bad Wolf).” Charismatic frontman Aaron Bruno is back to wow us with grunge-like vocals set to dark dance beats in RUN but does not stray too far away from the musical roots previously set in Megalithic Symphony.
A good amount of the tracks in RUN have very lullaby-esque qualities to their instrumentation and vocals. Songs such as “Fat Face,” “Like People, Like Plastic,” “Headrest For My Soul,” “I Am,” “Holy Roller,” and the album’s title track itself all play with light and airy vocals transitioning to aggravated wails that show the listener that there is more to them as a band than what they released in their debut work. They play with hip-hop elements in “Windows” as well as slight R&B characteristics in pseudo-romantic songs “Woman Woman” and “Lie Love Live Love.”
While they somewhat weave some fun new things throughout the album, Awolnation remembers their audience with the rest of the songs. Potential radio singles “KOOKSEVERYWHERE!!!” and “Dreamers” are both pure, fun electro-rock songs that make you want to dance and belt out the lyrics in angst, which is what Megalithic Symphony did. Dark and gritty “Jailbreak” is the closest thing to a “Sail” track on RUN, while final track “Drinking Lightning” begins with aggressive vocals that slip into serene and soothing musical moments. Overall, each track has a strong presence and should most certainly find a place on TV and in films.
RUN is universally themed as the supporter of the underdog. It’s interesting to see a band, especially one as young as Awolnation, dedicate an entire album to their experience with shocking newfound success at such an early point in their career. While RUN could’ve easily come across as narcissistic and overly confident, each track plays into an inspirational message and truly does prove the band’s passion for their craft. This electronic lullaby certainly showcased a slightly new side to the band that makes them more vulnerable to their audience.