The latest Above & Beyond album, We Are All We Need, is finally here, and if the latest Billboard charts are any indication, this may be their most significant work yet.
After two well-received and highly lauded LPs, Tri State (2006) and Group Therapy (2011), the bar for the latest studio album had been set very high. Even so, We Are All We Need has become the band’s first No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart–its last album reached #4 at it’s peak. Neilsen Music noted that 14,000 units sold this week, meaning that Above & Beyond has moved almost 3 times the number of albums when compared with its last top sales frame.
While many of the tracks were available in the months leading up to the album release, including songs “Blue Sky Action” and “Sticky Fingers,” fans eagerly purchased the complete 16 track LP. Above & Beyond are known to weave songs together on an album in a way that transcends its singles, from the film-score and progressive trance of Hello, to the anthemic All Over The World.
There isn’t a favorable consensus on all of the songs, however–Blue Sky Action has divided the Above & Beyond community. Another semi-controversial song is Sticky Fingers, though crowds often sing along at their shows.
Quite a few artists collaborated on We Are All We Need, with the incredibly talented vocalist Zoë Johnston again leading the pack. A new male singer, Richard Bedford, has replaced Alex Vargas, though there is a strikingly similarity between their voices. Little Something, a song reminiscent of their Oceanlab days, has the vocals of Justine Suissa. Victoria Horn was given a non-vocal credit on Counting Down The Days, and Tony, part of the Above & Beyond Trio, sung on Excuses.
Though Above & Beyond have a reputation as perfectionists, it appears their latest album has paid off. Only time can tell whether We Are All We Need will have the enduring qualities of the trio’s previous two albums, but if the popularity of the LP in its initial release is any indication, it just might be their best work yet. With a successful album release and a mostly sold-tour, Above & Beyond may be poised to take dance music’s thrown as it moves into 2015.