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All Things Bright and Beautiful

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All Things Bright and Beautiful is the third studio album recorded by American electronica project Owl City. It was released on June 14, 2011. It recieved mixed critical reviews but still became a commercial success and reached the No. 6 slot on the Billboard 200 album chart.

The album's title is named after the hymn of the same name.

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BackgroundEdit

Adam Young has continued with his synthpop style, as well as introducing styles of indie rock, folk, European trance in "Galaxies" and on "Alligator Sky" includes a couple of rap verses by Shawn Chrystopher. Other guest musicians on the album include Matthew Thiessen, LIGHTS, Breanne Düren and Adam Young's mother, Joan Young.

Adam originally intended that the album was to be released globally on May 24, 2011. It was then changed to May 17. Young then posted on April 6 on his official site that the release date had been pushed back to June 14, 2011.[1]He explained that "In an attempt to better connect the dots and ensure that every cloud in the sky is stitched together with its own special silver lining", and went on to say "with school finally out for the summer, it'll be a perfect time to sit back and watch the fireworks." He also posted previes for four tracks along with the explanation from the new album, which were all 1:30 long. These were "Alligator Sky", "Deer in the Headlights", "Galaxies" and "Dreams Don't Turn to Dust".

The track "January 28, 1986" (the date of the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster) samples Ronald Reagan's State of the Union speech and is also the introduction to "Galaxies".

TracklistEdit

No. Title Length
1. "The Real World" 3:34
2. "Deer in the Headlights" 3:00
3. "Angels" 3:40
4. "Dreams Don't Turn to Dust" 3:44
5. "Honey and the Bee" 3:44
6. "Kamikaze" 3:27
7. "January 28, 1986" (intro to "Galaxies") 0:37
8. "Galaxies" 4:03
9. "Hospital Flowers" 3:39
10. "Alligator Sky" (feat. Shawn Chrystopher) 3:05
11. "The Yacht Club" (feat. LIGHTS) 4:32
12. "Plant Life" 4:10
Total length 41:22

iTues bonus tracksEdit

No. Title Length
13. "How I Became the Sea" 4:25
14. "Alligator Sky" (No Rap version) 3:15

Owl City Galaxy bonus trackEdit

No. Title Length
1. "Lonely Lullaby" 4:28

German iTunes and Japanese edition bonus tracksEdit

No. Title Length
13. "How I Became the Sea" 4:25
14. "Shy Violet" 3:49
15. "To the Sky" 3:40

Taiwan edition bonus tracksEdit

No. Title Length
13. "Alligator Sky" (No Rap version) 4:28

Singles releasedEdit

The first and lead single released from the album was "Alligator Sky", and features Californian rapper Shawn Chrystopher. It was released on March 22, 2011. Four versions of the track were recorded. The first version features Shawn Chrystopher and is the main release, the second only includes Adam Young's vocals and features different lyrics, a third version features Atlanta rapper B.o.B was later leaked online, and the fourth version featured Big Boi's vocals from Atlanta hip hop duo Outkast which also leaked onto the internet..

An exclusive single, "Lonely Lullaby", was released to all members of Owl City Galaxy, a club that you automatically became a part of when you pre-ordered the album. The song mentions an "Annmarie" many times, a reference to Adam Young's ex-girlfriend, Annmarie Monson. This song, however, is not actually part of the album. The app was discontinued in mid-2013.

On April 19, 2011, "Galaxies" was released as the second single from the album, and was made available for purchase and download on iTunes. It is the band's highest charting single on Billboard Christian Song Chart, peaking at number 39, and surpassing Fireflies, which peaked at number 44 (2010). It has since then re-entered the chart at number 48 in the week of September 24, 2011.

The third single to be released was "Deer in the Headlights", released on May 24, 2011 (but as an iTunes Exclusive, was made available for download the previous day). The single was announced in a different way than what is considered traditional. Starting May 16, 2011, every day of that week part of the song would be added to the sneak peek. It was originally just called "New Song", and fans had to guess the new song. The first part of the song to be released were the drums, followed by the addition of bass, guitar, synthesizer, and vocals over the next four days. On the final day, the title for the song was announced. "Angels" was also released on September 20th, 2001.

"Lonely Lullaby" was released as a single on July 19, 2011, making it officially available to people outside of Owl City Galaxy. The song has been a surprising success, being one of the higher charting singles.

Young has confirmed in an interview with Sugarscape that on October 10 "Dreams Don't Turn to Dust" will be the next single from the album, although it is uncertain if it will be released in the UK only.


PersonnelEdit

Owl CityEdit

  • Adam Young – vocals, keyboards, piano, synthesizers, guitars, bass, drums, programming, percussion, glockenspiel, marimba, accordion, producer, engineer, art direction, audio mixer

Additional musicians and productionEdit

Reviews and CriticismEdit

All Things Bright and Beautiful received mostly mixed reviews, and scored 49/100 score from Metacritic, an 8/10 score from IGN and a score of 5/10 from Spin.

Commercial performanceEdit

Professional ratingsEdit

Review scores

Source

Rating

Allmusic

Christian Music Zine

Consequence of Sound

Entertainment Weekly

B−

The Guardian

IGN

8/10

JesusFreakHideout

Newsday

A−

Rolling Stone

Spin

5/10

USA Today

In the US, the album entered at #6 on the Billboard 200 chart and sold 8,000 copies. In Germany, the album peaked at #69 for just one week, lower than Ocean Eyes, which charted for 9 weeks and peaked at #7. In the United Kingdom, the album reached #30 in the midweek chart on June 23 but ended officially at #52.The album has currently sold around 120,000 copies in the US.

















Chart PerformanceEdit

Chart (2011) Peak
position
Australian Albums Chart 33
Austrian Albums Chart 65
Belgian Albums Chart (Flanders) 78
Canadian Albums Chart 7
Danish Albums Chart 27
Dutch Albums Chart 100
German Albums Chart 69
Japanese Albums Chart 31
Norwegian Albums Chart 33
Spanish Albums Chart 92
Swiss Albums Chart 40
UK Albums Chart 52
US Billboard 200 6
US Dance/Electronic Albums 2

YouTube PlaylistEdit

GalleryEdit

TriviaEdit

  • This is the only album to have not spawned any singles that have charted on the UK Singles Top 200 chart.

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