Bloc Party returns to the musical fray next week Tuesday August 21st, with their 4th studio album cleverly titled “Four”. I was going to wait until I got my copy and do a full review, but having listened to all the songs on the album, I wanted to give you all a sneak preview. A snapshot if you will of the new songs. It is a somewhat surprising effort for a band whose lead singer became heavily involved in the world of electronic music the last few years, and a lot of people thought the band was done playing together period. There is nothing electronic about this album except for the wailing guitars. I for one was glad that they reunited, and for the most part it sounds so good.
Here is a brief track by track look at “Four”.
1. ‘So He Begins To Lie’
This song starts off with a funky and heavy guitar riff and gradually works into soaring choruses. This song is intended to reach the rafters, and it does. In a word noisy, but lacks a little catchiness.
The songs burns with urgency right out of the gate with lead singer Kele singing in hushed tones. It isn’t long before it bursts into a heavy chorus where Kele’s vocals stretch to his limits. One of the better songs on the album.
This song is quintessential Bloc Party. It’s the second single off the album and a very solid song.
4. ‘Real Talk’
This was the first track off the album I felt was just average. It starts with a funky, chilled out guitar riff intertwined with jabbing vocals by Kele. Frankly, I kind of lost interest as it went along.
This song shocked me right out of the gate. This is I the heaviest, hardest rock song Bloc Party has ever done. It kind of works for me even if it does sound a little out of their element in a way.
6. ‘Day 4’
As much as ‘Kettling’ pushes Bloc Party’s hard rock envelope, ‘Day 4’ is a song that is right in their wheelhouse. It’s a mid tempo burner with layered chiming guitars that don’t stretch out Kele’s vocals.
Okay, so this song opens sounding as if Bloc Party ripped off that Days of the New song, “finally found a reason…”, then goes ape shit about a minute in. I imagine this is what it sounds like in someone’s head when they are having a psychotic episode. I’m not sure how I feel about this yet, but could be one of the more interesting songs they’ve done.
Another song in the mid-tempo arena in which Bloc Party plays so well. I would put it in the charming category for the sensitive indie kid crowd. Good song.
9. ‘Team A’
This song brings me back to early Bloc Party, so of course I like it. Kele repeats, “I am going to ruin your life…” several times throughout the song, and I highly doubt it. 9 songs in, and I’m digging this album enough to call bullshit on that line.
This song is destined to become the fan favorite sing-a-long of the new Bloc Party. About as perfect a Bloc Party song there is. Even with the somewhat silly “Woo-hoo’s”.
11. ‘The Healing’
The first time I played this, I thought this song was a miss. Have a feeling it will grow on me though. Sounds like the direction the Maccabees are heading with “Given To The Wild”.
12. ‘We’re Not Good People’
The album finishes with yet another song that is pretty heavy and frantic. The initial riff wouldn’t be out of place on a Soundgarden album circa 1990. Almost has that “Rusty Cage” kind of feel to it.
As a whole, I’m coming to grips with some of the heavier elements on the album. It’s not what you expect from a band four albums in. Most of the time bands tend to soften as they “mature”, but that isn’t the case with Bloc Party here. Individually my initial reaction is to like most of the songs here. Just another album in 2012, a good year for music, to like.