Review Summary: Feeder getting everything out of their system, hopefully.
In the face of personal disaster, Feeder apparently persist, content even to write about it. Where Comfort In Sound
sounded like an interpretation of Nicholas’s inner musings on late drummer Jon Lee’s suicide, Pushing The Senses
delivered a counterpart of emotional outpour – the band were at their most pensive, yet at the same time at their most drained. Silent Cry
, on the other hand, is Feeder regaining some of their deep-rooted energy – unable, or maybe too insecure, to put it all in one place.
Yes, technically you could compare. “Miss You” could by little details resemble the older “Insomnia” – the dominant guitar chords that fill the song’s loose ends sounding distantly familiar. It’s hastily-paced, certainly to the point, and, well, loud
. The parallel drawn, however, is abolished with lyrical differences. “Insomnia” had the almost triumphantly zany Finding my utopia a different chapter in a book/Thinking back to younger days as I escape in coopers break/It takes me back to 84 the futures knocking at my door
and Feeder seemed nearly optimistic. Nine years on, though, and Grant Nicholas crying Coming back, coming back alone/I miss you/Each day in day out/Why does it have to be this way?
feels like another tribute to the tragedy looming over the band since 2002. So while the undertones of old Feeder are musically expressed, the recent, nostalgically depressing Feeder still exist. The band offers their feelings to quirky, prompt melodies and somehow keep the song soulfully brooding - magnificently turning their glum style on it’s head, only to back out of commitment and revive. Somehow, it thrives.
The arena-esque sing-a-longs such as “Tracing Lines” and “Into The Blue” are possibly one of the most intriguing snippets, however. Considering how with recent efforts the band had supposedly shaken their ‘Britpop’ tag, the tracks come off as either brilliant, mindless fun or useless, mindless drivel. Where “Tracing Lines” simply has everything poppy enough to please on and off the record, “Into The Blue” is either ruined or adored before it can get started with distortion for Grant to loop (awkwardly) I’ll never give you up
Though replacing melancholy with energy can overshadow whatever profundity Feeder may have possessed and cause for, well, samey moments. The two formulaic patterns indecisively played upon each other occasionally threaten to break apart as sentiment runs swiftly away from captivation - experience getting the better of Nicholas’s song writing. “Fires” feels irrelevant, dragging with layered (yet uneventful) guitars and generally robotic instrumentation. Nicholas’s singing here resonates because it can do nothing else to salvage the blandly put She wants the world to see/to notice her/to cut things free
. In fact, the track nearly parodies opener “We Are The People” in that the vocals and song design are exactly the same – and when you’re past caring about Nicholas’s uninspired ‘emotional’ lyrics, you might as well close your eyes and blindly choose the song.
Still, it’s not enough to keep the band stuck revolving around the ‘meditative’ patterns they’ve been so trapped within. By no means have they shaken their troubles just yet; maybe it’s just reassuring that they can look past that grief and even celebrate what existed before it. The music is not just remembrance of Lee this time, but additionally homage paid to the timeline of Feeder’s career – and with this enjoyable blend of an outburst, maybe Feeder can move on and progress towards something more genuinely creative, or just more refined. Silent Cry
is Feeder trying to please everyone just enough: be it through tempo, noise or honest poetry – and though many will find maybe they’d rather be pleased with the best of one world, they will also find a favourable amount of content to warm to.