With their first release in over 20 years, The Feelies’ Here Before starts out with “Nobody Knows,” which speaks of the fact that nothing in the world is predictable. The upbeat first track is followed by the carefree and summery “Should Be Gone.” The number is backed with pleasant “Oohs,” which makes it easy to see how this track could be a favorite. Contrasting the way the album began, “Again Today” conveys a heavier and slightly darker emotion compared to the previous two tracks. “When You Know” brings back a bouncier beat that keeps the listener wanting more. Varying from the previous tunes, “Later On” is mellower than the album’s previous tracks, which makes it seem out of place. “Way Down” and “Morning Comes” seem to compliment each other with their semi-campy “sun breaks through the clouds” feel.
“Change Your Mind” brings in the second half of the album with lyrics that can be interpreted as stressing the need of change. “Here Before” is melancholic and even with the slight hint of positivity embedded deep within the cut it is no match for the distress of the composition. Breaking away from the sadness of the previous number, “Time Is Right” is energetic and promotes the idea of making a mark and living life to the fullest, all while reassuring that the time to do so is now. “Bluer Skies” seems a bit out of place following “Time Is Right” due to the mildness of the harmonies mashed up with the loudness of “Time Is Right.” Closing out the piece, “On And On” and “So Far,” both attribute to a strong finish to balance out the few weak tracks on Here Before.
In A Word: Average