A deeply elegiac album made with the self-assurance of a group working at the height of their considerable powers The title of Sea Power's new album is a line taken from the track Folly, an environmental protest song that abounds in memorable lyrics. “You're losing the right to breathe / You're losing the right to roam,” Sea Power's Hamilton sings at the end of the first verse, in a wonderfully boots-on-the-ground way of talking about environmental destruction that almost seeks to draw a line crossing space and time to stretch between the Kinder Scout mass trespass and recent epidemics of wildfire around the globe. But midway through Folly, Hamilton asks, “Are we all fucked?” This is an uncharacteristically bald and blunt question from a band who have so often wrapped their thoughts and feelings in stories, conjuring up grand images and retelling lost tales.
A lot has been made about the name change that accompanied the announcement of this sextet's first album in half a decade, but the rechristened Sea Power (formerly known as British Sea Power) is having no trouble with that teacup-sized storm. The band's never been particularly shy about its politics, in any case. "Waving Flags" from 2008's Do You Like Rock Music? praised immigration and integration, while "Who's In Control?" opened its 2011 successor Valhalla Dancehall by capturing the simmering national mood in suitably anthemic fashion.
Not every band can irk the hard right by simply deleting a single word from their name, but then not every band are (fka British) Sea Power. A group whose singular catalogue thirsts for the esoteric, they've amassed a personal mythology that includes a dancing bear, inter-war reference points, and some of the finest indie rock songwriting these fetid isles have spewed forth in an age. 'Everything Was Forever' is Sea Power's first album in five years, and their first under a newly doctored moniker.