Delta by Mumford & Sons
Mumford & Sons has always been an iconic band for me. As a band, they have a specific and unique sound. So much, that when I first heard Delta‘s single, “Guiding Light,” on the radio, I didn’t even have to wait for them to announce the artist at the end. It was clear to me that Mumford & Sons had released new music for the first time since their Wilder Mind album, which was released in 2015.
The album truly feels as if it were written in the order it is presented, meant to outline the story of the love and the loss of a single man. “42,” the first track, when thought of in the context of the entirety of the album, is similar to a prologue in which the events of the story have already occurred. It also makes reference to a ‘guiding light,’ which, conveniently, is the song immediately following. They did this again in “Picture You,” where they made a reference to the next track, “Darkness Visible.” Interestingly enough, this song doesn’t exactly have “lyrics,” but rather an excerpt from Paradise Lost, an epic poem by John Milton about Adam and Eve, and the story of how they became banished from the Garden of Eden.
“Darkness Visible” is the song that marks a tone shift in the album. The first chunk seems to actually be a story about unrequited commitment (I wouldn‘t go as far as to say unrequited love). A man loves a woman and believes her to be flawless, despite the fact that she does not want to stick around. He describes his enchantment towards her a number of times across several different songs. This begins foreshadowing and building up to the climax of the story– “Darkness Visible.” It‘s an interesting inclusion in the album, almost certainly meant to establish a ‘fall from innocence’ or some sort of realization. The rest of the songs afterward differ from that; instead of being awestruck because by flawlessness or purity, the songs are sung about a love that does not make sense and is not easy, despite the desire to keep it sacred.
Now that I think about it, the whole album could be a tribute to the story of Adam and Eve from Genesis.
This album drew me in and spit me out, and I enjoyed every minute of it. It was definitely worth the listen (and the two following it), and I recommend that you really take a chunk of time out of your day to digest the contents of this album. Frankly, I think it‘s brilliant.