Could pacificUV be on somewhat of a creative streak? This is their second album in less than 18 months, and a long way from the six-year gap between their self-titled debut and Longplay 2. Granted, they had to deal with stuff like the original formation of the band breaking up - you know, just small things. Then LP3 came along last year and it finally looked like the band was here to stay, with Weekends ensuring that the Athens, Georgia-based band were one of my favourite discoveries of last year, a laid-back and dreamy collection of songs that had an undeniable charm to them, even if the album as a whole took a while to click. They've decided to go down a downright accessible route for their fourth album, and its title does quite a good job of describing the experience of listening to it. If you fancy being taken somewhere else for 36 minutes, this will suit you down to the ground.

It's certainly ethereal enough to live up to the promise of its title, but there are more corporeal moments, too; in fact, you would hardly expect the quartet to display dance-pop heft, but that's precisely what they do on recent single 'Russians', eschewing the echoing drums and wide-eyed atmospherics of songs like opener '24 Frames' for something much more direct. There's a definite pop sensibility to the entire album, but the 'dream-pop' label doesn't quite sum the band up. Shades of the xx creep in on 'I Think It's Coming' (note the faded-sounding guitar line around two-and-a-half minutes in), one of the album highlights, which shows that they can still deliver surprises in the form of downtempo R&B. They're also rather good at serving up slick electro-pop like 'Wolves Again', one of the songs on the album on which Laura Solomon takes lead vocals. She does a fine job, too, her plaintive voice adding to the overall warmth of the slow-moving track.

There are times on After the Dream You are Awake that things become almost otherworldly, and it is on tracks like 'Run', with its prominent synths and simplistic two-chord foundation, that they prove that they're far more dextrous than before, shifting gears immediately it's faded out and presenting a slow-building, honest-to-goodness pop song in the form of 'American Lovers', with Clay Jordan's hushed vocals increasing the sense of audible intimacy. It's one of the points on the album when we get a glimpse into a vulnerable-sounding version of pacificUV. It may possess a big hook and even bigger chorus, but it still sounds as though it may fall apart at any second... and sure enough, it comes to a halt out of nowhere, leaving the mid-tempo 'I Wanna Be You' to bring the nine-track album to a close. It does this in impeccably beautiful fashion, stating once and for all that pacificUV may have just found stability. 15 years on from their formation, they've never sounded this good.