Following their first album, “Sigh No More” released in 2009, is Mumford and Son’s latest and highly anticipated album, “Babel,” which was released on Sept. 21, 2012. In the very first track, “Babel” delivers the same sound audiences love, which is urgent, ferocious strumming, combined with a driving confidence reminiscent of folk pride.

Lead singer Marcus Mumford’s voice never fails to be powerful, raw, honest and unconventional. Fortunately, there is a reassuring consistency between the first album and second. The band managed to remain true to their signature sound—a mix of loud, chaotic noise followed by a sudden decrescendo of softer, spoken lyrics, as well as experimenting with new musical choices. The fourth track, titled “Holland Road,” is especially soft, slow and melodramatic, almost evocative of Dashboard Confessional’s sound. The phrase “calloused mind” is an incredibly refreshing way for a successful artist to describe someone important to them—very real, unconditional and understanding. And of course, the third track and radio hit “I Will Wait” delivers a beautiful, catchy melody combined with lyrics that trigger emotions straight from the heart. Mumford sings of being in love, being faithful and being willing to do anything for his lover. The album as a whole is generally more romantic, although the first one did have its moments.

Their music has the ability to make audiences stop and not only listen and pay attention to every single word, but also savor and relate to it. Many songs in “Babel” seem to center upon promises to just be better, to seek self reflection and to inspire happiness. Fans would probably be happy to receive these messages as ones devoted to them. The very last track “Not with Haste” promises, “We will be who we are, / they will heal our scars and sadness will be far away,” which wraps up the album appropriately and universally. Fans will definitely not be disappointed.

5/5 Stars