Lungs (album)

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Lungs
Studio album by Florence and the Machine
Released 3 July 2009 (2009-07-03)
Recorded The Garden, Miloco, The Pool, The Synagogue, Strongroom 33, Space Cave, The Smokehouse, The Diary Studios
Genre Indie rock, indie pop, baroque pop, art rock, soul
Length 46:15
Label Island
Producer
Florence and the Machine chronology
A Lot of Love. A Lot of Blood
(2009)
Lungs
(2009)
iTunes Festival: London 2010
(2010)
Singles from Lungs
  1. "Kiss with a Fist"
    Released: 9 June 2008 (2008-06-09)
  2. "Dog Days Are Over"
    Released: 1 December 2008 (2008-12-01)
  3. "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)"
    Released: 22 June 2009 (2009-06-22)
  4. "Drumming Song"
    Released: 13 September 2009 (2009-09-13)
  5. "You've Got the Love"
    Released: 16 November 2009 (2009-11-16)
  6. "Cosmic Love"
    Released: 5 July 2010 (2010-07-05)

Lungs is the debut studio album by English indie rock band Florence and the Machine, released on 3 July 2009 by Island Records. The album debuted at number two on the UK Albums Chart for five weeks after its release. In January 2010, the album reached a new peak position of number one for two consecutive weeks. Lungs was eventually certified five-times platinum by the British Phonographic Industry. The album also peaked at number two for six weeks on the Irish Albums Chart.

The album was a main contender for the 2009 Mercury Prize and received largely positive reviews from music critics. Additionally, it won the MasterCard British Album award at the 2010 BRIT Awards. Lungs has sold more than three million copies worldwide.

Production[edit]

Florence and the Machine recorded Lungs in the United Kingdom with four different producers—Paul Epworth (who has previously worked with several other British artists, including Bloc Party, Maxïmo Park and Kate Nash), James Ford (one half of the electronic music duo Simian Mobile Disco), Stephen Mackey (former member of Pulp) and newcomer Charlie Hugall. Most of the songs on the album were mixed by Cenzo Townshend.[1]

Singles[edit]

"Kiss with a Fist" was released on 9 June 2008 as the lead single from Lungs, peaking at number fifty-one on the UK Singles Chart.[2] The song was used in the American comedy horror film Jennifer's Body and in the British comedy film St Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold,[3][4] both from 2009.

"Dog Days Are Over" was released on 1 December 2008 as the album's second single and reached number twenty-three on the UK Singles Chart.[2] The song was used in the eighth episode of the third series of the BAFTA-winning teen drama Skins,[5] originally aired on 12 March 2009, as well as in the second episode of the American comedy-drama television series The Unusuals, titled "Boorland Day" and broadcast 15 April 2009.[6] It was also featured in the theatrical trailer for the 2010 film Eat Pray Love, starring Julia Roberts.[7] The Yeasayer remix of "Dog Days Are Over", which is included on Between Two Lungs, was released on 12 October 2010 on iTunes.[8]

"Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)" was released as third single from the album on 22 June 2009, peaking at number twelve on the UK Singles Chart.[2] "Drumming Song" was released as the album's fourth single on 7 September 2009, reaching number fifty-four in the UK.[2]

"You've Got the Love" was the fifth single to be released from the album, and reached a new peak of number five on the UK Singles Chart in January 2010.[2] Florence and the Machine's duet with rapper Dizzee Rascal at the 2010 BRIT Awards on 16 February 2010, a mashup of "You've Got the Love" and Dizzee Rascal's "Dirtee Cash" titled "You Got the Dirtee Love", was released on iTunes the day after the ceremony.[9][10][11] "You Got the Dirtee Love" reached number two on the UK chart.[2]

On 5 January 2010, "Hurricane Drunk" was originally announced as the next new single from the album.[12] A video for the single was filmed in Paris on 8 January 2010 and premiered on 29 January after the Celebrity Big Brother 2010 final on Channel 4.[12][13] However, on 3 March 2010, a re-release of "Dog Days Are Over" was announced through the band's website. The single was released digitally on 11 April and on 7" vinyl the following day, along with a new video.[14]

"Cosmic Love" was released on 5 July 2010 as the album's sixth and final single.[15] The song was featured in the 21 January 2010 episode of The Vampire Diaries, titled "Bloodlines", and subsequently in the show's season 2 trailer.[16] The band made a guest appearance in the 7 February 2011 episode of Gossip Girl, titled "Panic Roommate", where they performed an acoustic rendition of "Cosmic Love".[17]

The song "Heavy in Your Arms", which is included on the soundtrack to The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, was released as a single on 15 November 2010 to promote the re-release of Lungs as Between Two Lungs.[18]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 79/100[19]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4/5 stars[20]
The A.V. Club A−[21]
Entertainment Weekly A−[22]
The Guardian 4/5 stars[23]
NME 6/10[24]
Pitchfork Media 7.2/10[25]
PopMatters 9/10[26]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[27]
Slant Magazine 4/5 stars[28]
Spin 4/5 stars[29]

Lungs received mostly positive reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 79, based on 22 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable reviews".[19] James Christopher Monger of AllMusic praised it as "one of the most musically mature and emotionally mesmerizing albums of 2009" and stated, "With an arsenal of weaponry that included the daring musicality of Kate Bush, the fearless delivery of Sinéad O'Connor, and the dark, unhinged vulnerability of Fiona Apple, the London native crafted a debut that not only lived up to the machine-gun spray of buzz that heralded her arrival, but easily surpassed it."[20] Ryan Dombal wrote for Pitchfork Media that Welch "bursts mouth wide wide over garage rock, epic soul, pint-tipping Britbeat, and—best of all—a mystic brand of pop that's part Annie Lennox, Grace Slick, and Joanna Newsom."[25] Entertainment Weekly's Joseph Brannigan Lynch opined that Florence Welch's "immaculately constructed indie pop recalls Regina Spektor, but without the studied artiness: Welch is more concerned with raw emotional release."[22]

Spin's Melissa Maerz stated, "From the way she sings, in big gulps and Teen Wolf growls, to the mystical art-rock ballads she bedazzles with sleigh bells, harps, and choirs, there's enough drama here for a Broadway musical. But her delivery is so raw that every mess feels genuine."[29] Sophie Bruce of BBC Music was emphatic, saying, "With vocals building from breathy almost-nothings to soaring, arching crescendos and the accompanying harps, strings, hopes and dreams, this album takes you somewhere you'll never want to come back from."[30] Emily Tartanella of PopMatters called Lungs "a perfect debut", complimenting the album's "vast jumble of influences, from Kate Bush and Tori Amos to UK electronica [...], with Florence's voice taking on most of the work", while describing Welch's voice as "a mix of jazz and folk and blue-eyed soul like nothing in a long time. Or rather, like everything."[26] Rolling Stone's Jon Dolan expressed that "[t]he best bits feel like being chased through a moonless night by a sexy moor witch."[27] Slant Magazine critic Nick Day referred to the band's music as "particularly sensitive to studio gloss" and praised Welch's singing as "a fine balance between elegance and frenzy."[28] In a review for The Guardian, Dave Simpson viewed that Welch "has created a sonic labyrinth of xylophones, percussion, Gregorian chants and werewolves. It can sound affected, occasionally crass, but there's enough adventure to make this worth backing for the Mercury."[23]

Jamie Fullerton of the NME commended the work of producers James Ford and Paul Epworth, writing that on tracks like "Dog Days Are Over" and "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)", they "create epic cauldron-swirls of Terminator-theme drums, Massive Attack atmospherics and twinkle-eye harp matched by Florence's grappling of skyward choruses", but found that "with the likes of 'I'm Not Calling You A Liar' and 'Howl' boasting similarly windy production yet no identifiable tunes the results sound aimless—if harmless."[24] Drowned in Sound's Ed Miller commented on the comparisons drawn between Welch and Kate Bush, arguing, "Like Bush, but minus the mark of genius, listening to Florence and the Machine can sometimes feel like being led by the hand through a story world by a girl who has forgotten to grow up." However, Miller critiqued that "[t]he only major problems are the inclusion of a cover of 'You've Got The Love', which is an example of a bonus track ruining the flow of an album, and 'Hurricane Drunk', a vehicle for a very questionable chorus."[31] Genevieve Koski of The A.V. Club felt that "[a]t times, Lungs borders on exhausting, careening as it does from one over-the-top track to the next. [...] But with a voice as strong and emotive as hers, it's not surprising that Welch has little use for moments of quiet contemplation."[21]

Commercial performance[edit]

Lungs debuted at number two on the UK Albums Chart (behind Michael Jackson's The Essential Michael Jackson), selling 63,020 copies in its first week[32]—the second highest amount for a debut album in 2009, after Susan Boyle's I Dreamed a Dream.[33][34] On 17 January 2010, after spending twenty-eight consecutive weeks in the top forty,[35] the album topped the UK chart for the first time, selling 51,005 copies.[36] It remained atop the chart the following week, selling 42,359 copies.[37] On 2 December 2011, Lungs was certified quintuple platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI),[38] with UK sales of over 1.4 million as of November 2011.[39]

Following the band's performance of "Dog Days Are Over" at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards, Lungs jumped from number forty-four to number fourteen on the US Billboard 200 with sales of 21,000 copies, an increase of 165% from the previous week.[40] The album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on 22 June 2012.[41] It had sold 1,142,000 copies in the US as of February 2013.[42] Worldwide, Lungs has sold over three million copies as of November 2011.[43]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Dog Days Are Over"  
4:13
2. "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)"  
Epworth 3:52
3. "I'm Not Calling You a Liar"  
  • Welch
  • Summers
  • Ford
  • Summers[a]
3:05
4. "Howl"  
  • Welch
  • Epworth
Epworth 3:34
5. "Kiss with a Fist"  
  • Welch
  • Matt Alchin
Stephen Mackey 2:04
6. "Girl with One Eye"  
  • Alchin
  • David Ashby
  • James McCool
Mackey 3:39
7. "Drumming Song"  
Ford 3:44
8. "Between Two Lungs"  
  • Welch
  • Summers
  • Ford
  • Summers[a]
4:09
9. "Cosmic Love"  
  • Welch
  • Summers
  • Epworth
  • Summers[a]
4:16
10. "My Boy Builds Coffins"  
  • Welch
  • Christopher Lloyd Hayden
  • Rob Ackroyd
Charlie Hugall 2:57
11. "Hurricane Drunk"  
  • White
  • Epworth[a]
3:13
12. "Blinding"  
  • Welch
  • Epworth
Epworth 4:40
13. "You've Got the Love"  
  • John Bellamy
  • Arnecia Michelle Harris
  • Anthony B. Stephens
Hugall 2:49

Limited edition box set[edit]

Bonus DVD

Asian edition[edit]

Best Buy edition bonus DVD[edit]

Notes

Between Two Lungs[edit]

Florence and the Machine announced via their website on 24 September 2010 that Lungs would be re-released on 15 November as a two-disc package titled Between Two Lungs. The reissue features new sleeve art, liner notes by frontwoman Florence Welch, and a twelve-track bonus CD including live versions, remixes, Welch's mashup collaboration with Dizzee Rascal, "You Got the Dirtee Love", and "Heavy in Your Arms", which was featured on the soundtrack to The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.[48] The live recordings were from the band's performance at the 2010 iTunes Festival, most of which were not previously available on the band's iTunes Festival: London 2010 EP.

Disc 2
No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Heavy in Your Arms"  
  • Welch
  • Epworth
Epworth 4:47
2. "You Got the Dirtee Love" (with Dizzee Rascal)
  • John Bellamy
  • Arnecia Michelle Harris
  • Anthony B. Stephens
  • Dylan Mills
  • Nick Cage
  • Hugall
  • Nick Detnon
3:41
3. "Hurricane Drunk" (The Horrors Remix)
  • Welch
  • White
  5:45
4. "Strangeness & Charm" (Live from Hammersmith Apollo)
  • Welch
  • Epworth
  5:49
5. "Swimming" (Live from Hammersmith Apollo)
  • Welch
  • James
  • Stafford
  • Mackey
  3:31
6. "Dog Days Are Over" (Yeasayer Remix)
  • Welch
  • Summers
  4:15
7. "Drumming Song" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10)
  • Welch
  • Ford
  • Hunt
  4:41
8. "Girl with One Eye" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10)
  • Alchin
  • Ashby
  • McCool
  3:49
9. "Hurricane Drunk" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10)
  • Welch
  • White
  3:33
10. "Dog Days Are Over" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10)
  • Welch
  • Summers
  4:15
11. "My Boy Builds Coffins" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10)
  • Welch
  • Hayden
  • Ackroyd
  2:47
12. "Hospital Beds" (Live from the iTunes Festival '10) Cold War Kids   2:17

Lungs – The B-Sides[edit]

On 27 February 2011, Lungs – The B-Sides was released exclusively in the United States to digital music retailers such as the iTunes Store and Amazon MP3.[49][50] This was followed by the release of a deluxe edition of Lungs in the US on 26 April 2011, featuring all eleven tracks from Lungs – The B-Sides on a bonus disc to accompany the original thirteen-track album.[51]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Swimming"  
  • Welch
  • Mackey
  • Stafford
  • James
3:21
2. "Heavy in Your Arms"  
  • Welch
  • Epworth
4:45
3. "Ghosts" (Demo)
  • Welch
  • Summers
2:59
4. "You've Got the Dirtee Love" (Live at the BRIT Awards 2010 with Dizzee Rascal)
  • John Bellamy
  • Arnecia Michelle Harris
  • Anthony B. Stephens
  • Dylan Mills
  • Nick Cage
3:41
5. "Dog Days Are Over" (Yeasayer Remix)
  • Welch
  • Summers
4:15
6. "Falling"  
  • Welch
  • Summers
3:32
7. "Are You Hurting the One You Love?"  
  • Welch
  • Hayden
  • Summers
  • Moth
  • Levi
2:57
8. "Addicted to Love" (Robert Palmer cover) Robert Palmer 3:19
9. "Bird Song"  
  • Welch
  • Hynes
2:54
10. "Hospital Beds" (Cold War Kids cover) Cold War Kids 2:15
11. "Hardest of Hearts"  
  • Welch
  • Anthony
3:27

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Lungs.[52]

Florence and the Machine
  • Florence Welch – vocals, additional drums, percussion (all tracks); backing vocals (tracks 7, 8); art direction
  • Rob Ackroyd – guitar (tracks 1, 5, 10, 13); bass (track 5)
  • Christopher Lloyd Hayden – drums (tracks 1–3, 5, 10, 11, 13)
  • Tom Monger – harp (tracks 1–3, 7–13)
  • Isabella Summers – additional drums, percussion (all tracks); additional production (tracks 1, 3, 8, 9); piano (tracks 1, 3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 13)
Additional personnel

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Edition Label Ref.
Netherlands 3 July 2009 Standard Universal [100]
Ireland Island [101]
United Kingdom 6 July 2009
  • Standard
  • deluxe
[45][102]
Norway Standard Universal [103]
France 9 July 2009 [104]
Germany 10 July 2009
  • Standard
  • deluxe
[105][106]
Australia 17 July 2009 Standard [107]
Poland 24 July 2009 [108]
Japan 5 August 2009 [47]
Canada 11 August 2009 [109]
Italy 25 September 2009 [110]
United States 20 October 2009 Universal Republic [111]
United Kingdom 23 November 2009 Limited edition box set Island [112]
Australia 21 May 2010 Deluxe Universal [46]
Netherlands 12 November 2010 Between Two Lungs [113]
Ireland Island [114]
United Kingdom 15 November 2010 [115]
Canada Universal [116]
Norway [117]
Germany 16 November 2010 [118]
France 18 November 2010 [119]
Australia 19 November 2010 [120]
Poland [121]
United States 27 February 2011 Lungs – The B-Sides (digital download) Universal Republic [50]
26 April 2011 Deluxe [51]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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