The second album by The Bravery is a radical departure from The Bravery, in a major improvement. Gone are the Duran Duran/Killers imitative songs and pseudo-new wave posturing, in are melodic songs with acoustic underpinnings. While a comparison to the radical shift The Killers made with Sam's Town is more than a little apt, The Bravery sound more like they boned up on Coldplay, The Rembrandts, The Cure or even a little Pink Floyd when they started laying the groundwork for "The Sun and The Moon."
The album is a low key affair, without the obvious single that marked "An Honest Mistake." But given time, "Time Won't Let Me Go" and "Believe" stay in your memory. There are a couple of darker moments, like "Tragedy Bound," about a woman so hard luck that "She's cutting herself just to see if it works." If you miss the breezy, easy pop of the debut, there's "Bad Sun," with an inescapable whistling hook.
The second disc in this special set is something of a mystery. The original album is compleley overhauled to make it into a night-club electronic disc, which often sounds like a force fit. It works on the numbers that were singles anyway ("Believe" and a total rethink of "Time Won't Let Me Go") but bleeds the charm out of "Bad Sun." In the case of "Time" and "The Ocaen," they almost turn into completely different songs. Personally, I prefer the more organic Sun (original) version, but a few elongated remixes could pump the "Moon" disc into a few club staples.
The Bravery have not completely escaped their past, however. "Every Word is a Knife In My Ear" is on a par with "Stop Drop and Roll" from the debut as filler and "Split Me Wide Open" is way too heavy handed lyrically for its own good. Main Braveheart Sam Endicott can be proud of this effort, though. With "The Sun and The Moon," he and his fellow Bravery mates have transcended their roots and made an album that shows a band with more promise than their debut would have led you to contemplate.