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Please don’t break up, this is a fantastic record.
The album begins with “So He Begins To Lie” and within 30 seconds you know this is going to be a great record. In recent interviews, frontman Kele Okereke has said that Nirvana’s “Bleach” was an influence on this record, and the classic Nirvana-style “hard-soft” dynamic is evident. But it still sounds like Bloc Party. “3×3” hits hard, with big guitars and big vocals. “Octopus” is a great choice for a comeback single, as it’s punchy, reminiscent of their previous works and an introspective look at where they are today. Check out the video for that tune at the bottom of this page. “Real Talk” is the first down-tempo number on the record, and allows Kele to reach notes that, if sung by anyone else would be cringe-inducing. And the chatter at the end is a great way to tie it together. “I’m just talking about my feelings”. “Kettling” is a easy to listen, radio friendly, catchy indie rock tune, with a melody similar to something you’d hear from Incubus or someone like that, but with a bitchin’ guitar solo. “Day Four” is a shoegazer, but entranced in a beautiful melody. This record is built like a concert setlist. “Coliseum” continues on the mellow vein or the previous tune, but then they hit the pedal and all hell breaks loose.
“V.A.L.I.S” is another classic Bloc Party mid-tempo number. At just over 4 and a half minutes “Team A” is the longest track on this release. This was the song that allowed me to finally get the comparisons to Sonic Youth that I have read over the years. Weird and beautiful. “Truth” brings the pace back down a bit, but only to set up the incredibly mellow setting of “The Healing” which has some cascading guitars and upper registrar notes, and is easy to get lost in. It’s almost too mellow, and when classic BP-style tune “We are not good people” kicks in, it’s sends a spike through your system (in the best way possible). It’s hard and fast and awesome. A killer way to end a fantastic record. I wasn’t too happy that this record took so long to come out, but boy was it worth the wait.
The “Deluxe Edition” of this record also included 2 more tracks. “Mean” is a great mid-tempo toe-tapper that totally would have fit around the middle of this album. “Leaf Skeleton” is another clean channel, head-bopper. Perhaps a left over from “A Weekend In The City” but awesome nonetheless. The record is available on CD, Vinyl and digital download, you can obtain yours here: Bloc Party – “Four” [Deluxe Edition] – At Amazon.com
Bloc Party – “Octopus”