Ranking Lumineers Brightside

The image is of the Lumineers album cover of a hand coming out of the bottom center in a bright blue sky. The lettering is white.

The Lumineers are a popular band best known for their songs “Ophelia” and “Cleopatra.” The band is currently composed of two members: Wesley Shultz and Jeramiah Fraites. However, over time, there have been four other people involved: Jay Van Dyke, Maxwell Hughes, Ben Wahamaki, and Neyla Pekarek. The Lumineers released a new album on January 14 called BRIGHTSIDE. The album features nine tracks, all of which are truly beautiful. Ranking them was not an easy task, as not one of these songs is one I would skip. However, this is the final list of songs with number one being my favorite and number nine being my least favorite.


The lyrics and music in this song were amazing and they matched really well. My issue with this track was the bridge. It repeated the same line six times, and that line repeated words as well. I understand that songs should have repetition, but this took it too far in my mind. On top of the  repetition, the lyrics didn’t resonate with me as much as the other songs on this album. 


I do think that the lyrics in this song are all beautiful individually, however, when put together I don’t feel that they connect with each other. The instrumental aspect of this song is fantastic, and it is my favorite part. Despite the redeeming qualities of this track, I don’t think I would actively search it out to listen to, which is why it’s so low on my list. I do still greatly enjoy this song and would most definitely sing along if I were to hear it again.I wouldn’t skip it.


This song was the title track and the opening of the album. I think it was the best song to pick for the starting number, however, it was not my favorite overall. I loved the baseline, and the lyrics had entertaining parts, but they weren’t emotionally impactful for me. This song is definitely one to sing  loudly in a car, but it is not a top pick for me by any means.


This song started off with its chorus immediately, which I enjoyed for no particular reason. The lyrics of this song were certainly sad at times, however, I feel this song has an overall optimistic feel to it. The actual verses sounded scared and desperate, and the chorus gave off the vibe of “I have no clue what is happening, but we’ll get through it together,” I found that to be a very fun pairing. The reason this song was not higher is because the chorus repeated almost four times at the end of the song with almost no variety, and the repetition was again a little bit dull. I still greatly enjoyed the song overall.


Going into this song, I admit I was doubtful. The title kind of threw me off, and I’m not entirely sure why it had that effect on me. In the end however I did enjoy it a lot more than expected. Throughout the song, each chorus had a slightly different twist to it which was a breath of fresh air. Along with that, the pre-chorus was absolutely fantastic, and I truly did love this song. The only reason it’s not higher is because the other’s spoke to me more on an emotional level.


Even with the seemingly happy name, this song attempted to rip my heart out. I have to say it almost succeeded. Some of the lyrics felt almost like a personal attack, and if people don’t play this at my next birthday I’m kicking everyone out. Despite the emotional toll this took on me, it almost felt uplifting at points. The song seems to be about a person struggling, and who feels like they aren’t being heard or seen. Throughout the song, the phrase “it’s alright” is repeated, almost as if the singer is saying that yes, bad things are happening and we are all struggling, but everything will turn out ok and we’re all in this together.


This song opened with a piano, and it felt like the most peaceful seconds of my life. Then Wesley Shultz started singing and I wanted to cry. The rasp in his voice hit me in just the right way, and the instrumental parts of this song brought me so much happiness. The lyrics truly made me hurt inside in the best way possible too. This song also featured other voices in the chorus, and it was the first track on the album to do so.


This song was the closing track for the album, and it was the perfect pick for that slot. It felt like a combination of all the other songs on the album which I absolutely loved. Some of the lyrics, and the way they were ordered, almost made it feel like “brightside” is a metaphor for death. Which then gave all the previous songs a new meaning which was absolutely amazing. This song felt so bittersweet,  like the singer was just barely holding onto any hope, which I thought was beautiful. Despite how much I loved this song, I just couldn’t give it number one.

Which brings us to my favorite song on the album:


This song was the shortest on the album, and that’s my only issue with it. I want more. The voices sound almost angelic  and I didn’t just want to cry, I did cry. This song feels nostalgic, both for memories I’ve never experienced and memories I miss with all my heart. I’m sure that for many people, this song wouldn’t be their first place, but there’s something about it that really clicked for me in a way not a lot of songs do. I truly loved all of the lyrics in this track, and I know for a fact that it will be playing on repeat while I lay in the dark.

BRIGHTSIDE was a fantastic album, and I hope all of you listen to it. along with all of the Lumineers’ other music.