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Monday Music News

By london_ken Last edited 146 months ago
Monday Music News
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The main album release this week is Bloc Party's debut LP 'Silent Alarm'. Generally positive reviews abound, with the consensus being 8 or 9 out of ten.

Most reviews mention the Franz Ferdinand connection, taking different stances. NME's review reckons that "the more you think about it, the less Franz (white, Scottish, could’ve existed any time from 1976 onwards) and Bloc Party ( Benetton boyband, from London, achingly 21st century) have in common...". The Guardian agrees but in a not-altogether-flattering way, saying "there's none of Franz Ferdinand's sexiness, funk or swagger here, nor an undeniable hit along the lines of Take Me Out," along the way to giving the album a relatively meagre 3 out of 5 stars. The Independent leans toward The Guardian's view, reckoning that "there's nothing here with quite the nagging charm of 'Matinee' or 'Take Me Out'". It does, however, give the album 4 out of 5.

The Guardian's review apart, most others heap superlatives on Silent Alarm. Drowned In Sound reckons the album is "an addictive, pulsing and innovative record that confirms Bloc Party's status as one of our most essential bands and showcases how exciting British music is capable of being right now." Those of you who, like Londonist, weren't overly impressed with the single 'So Here We Are' will be interested to note the DiS reckon it's the weakest track on the album. The BBC says, "Glorious just about sums Silent Alarm up."

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The Wedding Present have always been one of those indie bands people claim to like for credibility purposes, but whose record sales never matched those claims. They release Take Fountain today. Reviews were hard to come by but The Guardian gives it 4 out of 5 stars, and says, "Break-up albums are often about as much fun as the final throes of the relationship they lament. But this painful goodbye is cause for celebration." Worth a gander for the young whipper-snappers who want to explore the non-mainstream side of indie.

Last Updated 14 February 2005

Jodi

I'd certainly agree with the superlatives heaped upon Silent Alarm. I've been listening to it non-stop over the past couple of weeks, and while it certainly doesn't have any singles like Take Me Out, it also doesn't have any IDM anthems like Aphex Twin's Windowlicker or any pioneering hip-hop/funk fusions like Ain't Nothing But A G Thing.


The point is, it's anything but a Franz Ferdinand album. Franz Ferdinand are a singles band. Their album lacked cohesion, whereas the best Bloc Party songs, while certainly catchy, don't have the sort of (frankly, unmatchable) killer singles hook that Take Me Out has. But to be honest, it doesn't matter. The album's probably better off for it.

Each song is a compilation of carefully woven art-rock bits stuffed together into three minute pop songs. It's absolutely brilliant, and is undoubtedly one of the albums of the year already.
Even if you don't buy it, download it. It deserves to be heard.