SINGLE REVIEW: Limbo by Royal Blood
Our beloved Brighton duo Royal Blood return with another disco-infused dancefloor-filler, Limbo, feeding our appetite for more richly groovy rock with another taste of their highly anticipated third album, Typhoons!
Following on from our first serving of the new album, September's release Trouble's Coming, which set the tone for the new era and shattered expectations of Royal Blood's signature thrashing rock 'n' roll sound, title-track Typhoons proved that the boys were going all in with this new dirty funk vibrancy. The band’s return has been further heralded with Trouble’s Coming hitting #1 on US Rock radio (their fourth single to achieve that feat) and Typhoons reaching #2 on the UK Rock & Metal singles chart.
Now, arguably the most boundary-pushing moment on the upcoming album, five-minute long Limbo wields the two furthest extremes of the Royal Blood sound with complete ease - it's no sweat for our Brighton boys. Opening with a thumping drumbeat and a glistening synth shimmer - giving us Eric Prydz vibes, of all things, yet somehow they make it work - Limbo kicks off with a crashing spiral of heavy percussion and thick bass, true Royal Blood style, as Mike Kerr's harmonies deliciously melt into each other.
The luminous mirror ball synth that shines from the hook stands out as being a bold step into the unknown, but the tight, trashing rhythms of the verses feel like the fundamental core of Royal Blood as we know them. And by the time those two elements coalesce into the song’s gleaming finale, it’s apparent that the duo has created something remarkably different while staying true to the band’s roots, with a perfect marriage of disco-synth and striking, scuzzy rock.
The more slices of the new record that the pair deliver to us, the more evident it becomes that this experimentation isn't just a toe-dip in the waters - they're diving right in and dragging us under with them.
While the pandemic may have delayed the release of the new album, it also gave the duo more time to refine and distil that fresh sound we've arrived at. "These new songs gave me this incredible freedom, vocally and instrumentally," says Kerr. "I got to dance across the groove, if that makes sense - it was something to slice over, and that felt exhilarating. We realized that there was a genius in just deleting stuff, paring things back. You’d suddenly get hit with air, with space. We kept cutting parts and sounds. It was such a revealing and thrilling experience."
The band comment, "It is without a doubt the most ambitious and wildest we have allowed ourselves to be and we can’t wait to invite you this far down the rabbit hole with us."
With the arrival of Typhoons creeping closer, it's not long to wait until we can experience the full record in all of its glory on April 30th. Until then, we've got three hard-hitting singles to keep spinning in anticipation.
Check out the Limbo music video below:
Stream Limbo on Spotify and Apple Music
Review by Chloe Robbins
Photography by Dean Martindale