On October 20th, two-time BRIT Award Winners Florence and the Machine will perform at the Santa Barbara Bowl as part of their “How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful” promotional tour. After a three-and-a-half year hiatus between albums, the band’s new record has definitely been worth the wait: In its first week of sales, the album topped the charts in eight countries, surpassing the group’s previous album receptions.
With an elegant combination of heart-wrenching soul and blood-pumping indie rock, Florence and the Machine has become a staple for the Alternative genre since the band’s breakout album “Lungs” in 2009. Florence’s mastery of conveying sorrow, triumph and everything in between is apparent in the band’s unconventional pairings of powerful vocals and striking lyrics along with graceful instrumental accompaniments. The group’s eccentric use of long instrumental breaks to begin or end their songs creates an otherworldly atmosphere, one that enraptures and envelops us seamlessly. Listening to any Florence and the Machine song will effortlessly take you to a different time, place or state of mind.
Florence and the Machine’s unique and unforgettable sound has brought them much well-earned success: In just seven years, the band has received eight BRIT nominations, three Grammy nominations and ten MTV award nominations from Europe, America and Japan. They’ve won the BRIT’s Critics’ Choice Award (2009), BRIT’s Album of the Year (“Lungs,” 2010) and the MTV Video Music Award for Best Art Direction on their music video “Dog Days Are Over” (2010). But with nine pending nominations and their new record’s unprecedented rankings, the band’s success will undoubtedly continue to escalate.
The group’s newest album, “How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful,” has topped the charts in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, New Zealand and the United States. “How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful” has lived up to its preceding albums “Lungs” and “Ceremonials” by upholding Florence’s legacy of snatching the top spot in the UK Albums Chart for two consecutive weeks. However, this is the first of the group’s three albums to make it to No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart; “Lungs” reached Number 16 in 2009, while “Ceremonials” took Number 6 in 2011.
While the previous records have a more hauntingly engulfing effect, “How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful” is a celebratory cry, an aubade welcoming life’s possibilities with triumphant instrumentals and simply stunning vocals. With the group’s empowering sound and undeniably strong stage presence, Florence and the Machine’s performance will be one you won’t want to miss.