Review: Nothing But Thieves — Moral Panic

Categories:  The Arts    Music
Thursday, November 12th, 2020 at 1:10 PM
Review: Nothing But Thieves — Moral Panic by Margeaux Dase

British indie-alt band, Nothing But Thieves, finally released their third album, “Moral Panic,” on Oct. 23. The band had been releasing singles from the anticipated record for the past few months, making quite the impression on alternative charts.  

The first single, “Is Everybody Going Crazy?,” came out just a few days after COVID-19 hit America’s borders. Written well before the pandemic even happened, it somehow sums up what everybody has been feeling going in and out of quarantine. No wonder it was a hit. The next few singles contributed even more to the apocalyptic vibes.  

One of my favorites on the album, “Unperson,” has the vibes of a dystopian novel. It addresses how people perceive the world in one way, and see the faults in it, but it’s actually much worse. The narrative is great, but the best part may actually be the beat — edgy and melodic.  

The album does get into more modern politics with “Can You Afford to Be An Individual?” With lyrics like “a walking contradiction in a MAGA hat / It’s where I wanna be / God bless the land of the free,” to “Loving the comfort of pack mentality,” to “The liberals aren't liberal, they're just as venomous / And you can't have an opinion unless you're one of us,” you can see the direct influence social media and American politics has had all over the world (remember, this band is from Essex).  

And this wouldn’t be a Nothing But Thieves album without some ballads. Like their previous works, lead singer Conor Mason and his amazing operatic vocals work hand-in-hand with heartfelt and emotional lyrics to tug on the hearts of listeners. “Impossible” is a love song about wanting to rely on a person because you didn’t think life was worth it beyond them. My favorite lyric, “I could drown myself in someone like you / I thought it was impossible, but you made it possible,” becomes epic with the range and feeling Mason delivers it with. 

Of course, the album is not perfect. I wish more songs had a stronger and lasting moment in them, and while there is an apparent theme to this album, the entirety of it does not quite fit together. However, alone, the singles are amazing.

Nothing But Thieves came up with a great soundtrack to our quarantines, even if it was not on purpose. Overall, this album delivers two things for sure: funky bops to rock out to while driving, and songs you can curl up with under the covers, while dwelling on the lyrics.

If that’s your cup of tea, I highly recommend checking this record out.

Margeaux Dase is a staff writer for The Spectator. She can be reached at edinboro.spectator@gmail.com.

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