Ethereal band Florence + the Machine follows up the strong showing of its first album ‘Lungs’ with ‘Ceremonials,’ which is already beginning to receive positive critical feedback.[/media-credit]

Florence + the Machine truly is a machine at creating great albums. Florence Welch’s voice shines especially in the band’s newest album, Ceremonials, which came out Tuesday.

The lead single from the album, “Shake It Out,” is catchy and inspirational. It is a feel-good song that audiences of all types will definitely enjoy. Reminiscent of “Dog Days Are Over,” the lead single from Florence + the Machine’s 2009 album Lungs, “Shake It Out” stays true to the band’s style from its previous work. However, the song is not something that fans have already heard from the band.

This song is sure to be a hit on the radio and a fan favorite. It is the type of song to pick the listener up after a rough day, but it can also be enjoyed simply for its likeable melody.

Welch’s unique voice floats through the melodies and produces an intense tone to nearly all the songs on the album. Fans will not be disappointed with the quality, as the band succeeds in delivering many memorable and powerful songs that listeners can get excited about.

Overall, the style of the album grows from what has been seen in Florence + the Machine’s previous album. However, fans will still be content in hearing the band’s ability to maintain its unique sound within the music world. Many of the songs have a nice beat to them, with cool backbeats and intense vocals. Welch brings her dramatic flair to all the songs, so there is hardly a dull moment on the album.

Certain songs definitely did pop, though, namely “Only If For A Night,” “Never Let Me Go” and “No Light, No Light.” These songs were all quite catchy and had classic Welch intensity in the vocals.

Welch demonstrates her singing talent, showcasing her wide range and distinctive lyrical presentation. The listener cannot help but smile when listening to these tunes, and longtime fans will definitely want to listen to these over and over again.

The lyrics in “No Light, No Light” are particularly interesting. The meaning of the song is special and powerful. The song describes a struggling relationship, and this is a song that listeners can relate directly to their lives. This is not always the case for Florence + the Machine’s lyrics; sometimes they tend to be cryptic and somewhat obscure. Meaningful lyrics plus a hauntingly beautiful melodic line is the equation for the ideal song, which Florence + the Machine achieves with this track.

The song “Breaking Down” differs from Florence + the Machine’s typical sound. The instrumentation is not what the band usually does, and the lyric presentation is less intense than what Welch is usually known for. The vocals sound breathy, and the note range is not as big as in many of the band’s songs. However, this change of style is not a bad thing; it is good for the band to grow and take some risks on songs. Whether the band found success in this risk or not is up to each listener’s preference.

The entire album has a good mix of the band staying true to its original style, but also continuing to grow with its sound. As always, Welch’s vocals succeed in making every song sound interesting and unique, making Ceremonials a great addition to her band’s body of work.

4 stars out of 5