Years & Years Explore A Bold New Pop Sound On “Sanctify”

Years & Years' 'Communion': Album Review
Find out what we had to say about Years & Years' debut LP 'Communion.'

UK trio Years & Years make an explosive return to the pop scene with the first taste of their sophomore set. According to the press release, “if there is a ghostly shadow sitting over ‘Sanctify,’ it is arguably that of 13-year-old Olly Alexander listening to Britney’s ‘Slave 4 U’ his bedroom.” And you can hear the impact of The Neptunes’ bone-rattling beats, not to mention the pop icon’s sexy delivery, on the song. This is a bolder, broader pop sound than the club-centric gems housed on Communion.

While the music is more accessible, the accompanying visual is typically demented. Set in a dystopian future where robots rule the earth and the few remaining humans are paraded around like circus animals, Olly is captured and forced to dance for his life. If Black Mirror ever spoofs X Factor, it would look a little something like this. What does it all mean? I’ll let the singer explain. “I want to take people on a wild and wonderful adventure through my dreams to a world that’s very different from our own,” he begins.

“The video for ‘Sanctify’ centers around an audition against the backdrop of a future metropolis called Palo Santo. It’s the first part of a bigger jigsaw puzzle and my hope is that it confuses the hell out of people but also excites them in a mysterious and sensual way,” Olly continues. “We’ve deliberately hidden lots of different meanings and I want people to come up with their own interpretations, I’m asking people to jump down the rabbit hole with me and let their imagination run free.” Watch up top.

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