Monday, December 28, 2009

Albums Of The Decade : 6 - Bloc Party - Silent Alarm (2005)

While it’s equally – nay, more - valid to criticise bands for refusing to change their approach, Bloc Party’s erratic post-Silent Alarm output provides the perfect example of a band trying too hard to be progressive and losing the essence of what made them such a great band in the first place. It’s all there on their debut album – the tense, insistent guitars, the icy instrumental washes, the urgent, angst-ridden vocals, the dreamy soundscapes, the flashes of romance (‘This Modern Love’), the propulsive, supple rhythm section; for a debut record by a young guitar-bass-drums combo, it was both remarkably danceable and eerily atmospheric, and it was little wonder a remix album followed. Tracks like ‘Banquet’ and ‘So Here We Are’ retain a sense of soul that their subsequent experiments with electronics and social comment have sorely lacked, but as long as Silent Alarm reminds us of their abilities, we’ll be patient with them.

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