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|2. Whispers In The Dark|
|3. I Will Wait|
|4. Holland Road|
|5. Ghosts That We Knew|
|6. Lover Of The Light|
|7. Lover's Eyes|
|9. Hopeless Wanderer|
|10. Broken Crown|
|11. Below My Feet|
|12. Not With Haste|
That said, the music Mumford & Sons make is not all that safe. The group do not sound like anyone else, and the songs on Babel – as with those on debut album Sigh No More, a top five release in both the US and the UK – don’t adhere to the kind of formula one might adopt were they attempting to second-guess the pop charts.
Although the songs are melodic and accessible, they are far from routine; heavy rhythms dominate the floor of most tracks, while frontman Marcus Mumford’s impassioned and rasping vocals give the air of a man who is at least singing for his supper, and on occasions even his life.
Despite what the haters might say, this is impressive stuff. The beautiful and stirring Holland Road speaks of someone being “cut down”, while an ominous drumbeat suggests footsteps trudging away, frustrated and alone.
Whispers In The Dark flutters like a quickly beating heart, its melodies drifting in and out of focus as the song's mood shifts from gentle refrain to dominant force.
Best yet is closing track Not With Haste, a fragile ballad that shimmers like sunshine on an empty sea. As this track builds force, Mumford asserts that “I am what I am”, although he may have added that he is not what many people assume.
Mumford & Sons are a fine modern folk band who have found ways to breathe new life into an ancient form of music. In an ideal world, it would be nice if the group were afforded the credit they deserve before they, too, fade into the past.
Find more music at the BBC This link will take you off Amazon in a new window