Album Review: Dance Fever by Florence + the Machine
Exceptionally Good, Based on 4 Critics
The Line of Best Fit - 90 Based on rating 9/10
Choreomania, as the condition was later termed, was recently put to screen in Ari Aster's 2019 horror film Midsommar, but Florence Welch's long-standing fixation with the pagan and the bewitched has rarely felt horrific. Instead, all of her references to witchcraft and the occult have felt like pure theatrics - her music colourful and accessible, her wicker made for the Glastonbury main stage rather than their runes. Since her 2009 6x platinum debut Lungs, her presence has remained stubbornly consistent, an anomaly amongst her pop peers who often contorted their sound to the whim of each passing trend.
Florence + the Machine have always had a way of conveying various emotions through their intricate yet ethereal instrumentation and Florence Welch's heartfelt, emotive songwriting, from the melodramatic, mythical baroque pop of 2011 debut Lungs to 2018's stripped-down and direct High as Hope.
On much-anticipated fifth record Dance Fever, Florence + the Machine deliver a personal, chaotic and beautiful ode to letting go of the anxieties that come with being open. The album's artwork draws inspiration from the Pre-Raphaelites, which is very fitting and representative of the subject matter, as the movement saw art's purpose as being to illustrate life in a detailed manner.
Florence Welch’s fifth album is a startling return, full of all the elements which made us sit up and take notice of her in the first place Despite being titled Dance Fever, Florence Welch’s fifth album is not one filled with disco bangers, nor is it a sharp left turn into Euro-trance territory. Instead, this feels very much like a Florence And The Machine album – full of big, pop-rock euphoric anthems, which of course you can also dance to, if the mood takes you. The album actually takes its title from a historical event which Welch read about a few years ago – a plague in medieval times called choreomania, where people would literally dance until they dropped dead of exhaustion.
Proclaiming herself as king, Florence + The Machine's fourth album is as majestic as it is authentic. Tip-toeing along the lines of grandiosity, the record (and Welch herself) possesses self awareness and is beautifully honest. Anxiety's dance partner, a girl against god, a defector from love: Florence weaves together poetry, spoken word and angelic vocals effortlessly.