Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
Glasgow based band Franz Ferdinand have just won two coveted Brit Awards - Best Group and Best Rock Act. They obviously deserve the awards - their album was a technical and artistic achievement taking cues from legendary rock bands such as Joy Division.
Now Bloc Party aims to emulate the Scottish bands success by their new album Silent Alarm. Obviously such a tag is not deserving on them because they have been on the scene longer than Franz Ferdinand. Commercially the indie band would probably be never as successful as Franz Ferdinand. With this, the hope of the second wave of Brit Rock will hopefully bring the young London band much deserved attention.
Comparisons with Franz Ferdinand is inevitable. Reviews has popped up describing the band as the new Franz Ferdinand. Even I am guilty of writing a review that has referenced Franz Ferdinand more than Bloc Party before the review actually begins.
Silent Alarm is nothing short of exiting. 'Artrock' as it has been called by certain music journos, is certainty evident throughout the album. I would attempt to write the review through a track by track analysis rather than the usual low-down.
From the emotive powerful opener Like Eating Glass the band flaunting energy is the key to the rest of the album. The guitars are simple, no fancy riffing or silly technical show offs, the drumming are rhythmatic. The second track Helicopter is even more amazing with excellent guitar. Jumpy at parts, you would want to dance to the song. The lyrics are anti-Bush you know.
Positive Tension starts awkwardly but eventually builds up to something more special. The next one Banquet is my favourite of the album. (Update: Banquet is the lead single) The following track, Blue Light is slow and almost 'romantic' but its not weak. She's Hearing Voices is great. It sounds misplaced among the album but still powerful enough.
The Modern Love is one of my favourites. I just can't stop listening to it. Aggressive it isn't (none on this album is anyway), but very very emotive. The rock returns in the form of another anti-war song, The Pioneers, great vocals on this. Superb chorus. The weakest track, another anti-war track, however comes next. Price of Gasoline despite the great lyrics is just too weird for my personal taste.
More melodies with So Here We Are. This was the first single released by the band from this album. The song is very radio friendly and mellow. Despite this I love it. Luno returns the album to ultra fast pace non-stop. Very Sonic Youth. After that you would certainty want to catch a breather and Plans allows that. The final, Compliments, is another slow mellow song. I love ambient music but this is just too weak to end the album. They probably should have gone with a faster song. If this has gone somewhere in the middle of the album then I would probably love it.
If you are a new fan of Franz Ferdinand or listen to old 80s rock bands like Joy Division, 90s legend Radiohead or more recently bands like The Libertines, then do yourself a favour and check this out. I would be surprised that Bloc Party didn't win next years Brit.