Bloc Party
Four


2.0
poor

Review

by DoofusWainwright CONTRIBUTOR (62 Reviews)
July 1st, 2015 | 19 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The musical equivalent of an over compensating super strength handshake

The demise of Bloc Party has been nothing short of tragic, in the space of just four full length releases they've gone from the jaw dropping experimentation of 'Luno', the razor sharp pop sensibility of 'Banquet' and dynamite rhythm section workouts like 'Helicopter' and 'She's Hearing Voices' to regulation riff grinders like 'Four's duller than dishwater opener 'So He Begins to Lie', the bicep flexing try-hard 'Kettling' and the downright embarrassing finale 'We Are Not Good People'. How the band came to the conclusion they should attempt straight ahead macho rock material like this with the effeminate Kele singing over the top is beyond me, the results are comical bordering on disastrous.

Of course things started to go a little awry on the overwrought, overreaching 'A Weekend in the City'; a release that still boasted some great moments and was never less than a fascinating listen thanks to its failings being equally interesting to its successes. 'Intimacy' was a rushed hodgepodge and rightly saw the band take an extended hiatus as a result, so fingers were crossed that when Bloc Party inevitably came back together they'd bring their A game (read ‘Silent Alarm’ quality). Unfortunately this doesn’t transpire and in actual fact Bloc Party have made the same mistakes that so many bands on the comeback trail fall into and have dumbed-down and turned the guitars up to 11 in a desperate attempt to appear so loud and energetic no one can ignore them. Subtlety and song writing nous have been the inevitable casualties; like a super strength bone crunching handshake this album is overcompensating for lacking the genuine confidence and natural ease of yore.

Sadly the attempts at pure pop appeal are vapid and irritating; 'Octopus' applies some interesting effects in a desperate attempt to dress up a lightweight composition while V.A.L.I.S shows promise before revealing a regrettably underwritten chorus. The ballads are a mixed bag; 'Day Four' is insipid but on the flip side 'Real Talk' has undeniable style and works well because, and get this, Kele's vocals actually sound like they match the material at hand.

Despite a few bright spots this album’s still a bitter disappointment; Bloc Party seem to have gone for the Kerrang audience jugular ditching the sophistication, restraint and intelligence evident in their early material and replacing these qualities with tired riffs and cheesy choruses. After ‘Silent Alarm’ you’d have imagined these lads were destined to follow in the footsteps of Radiohead but at the last count they’d be doing well to keep up with Biffy Clyro...lordy.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Damn this band lost the plot

Digging: Todd Rundgren - A Wizard, A True Star

Rowan5215
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


36299 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

In para 2 you called Silent Alarm Silent Shout, might want to fix



good review dude tho I don't really agree

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I'll take a knife to that mistake Rowan, thanks



How do you rate this compared to their other albums?

zakalwe
July 1st 2015


18639 Comments


Get back to work Doof dude! You're knocking these reviews out at a frightening rate and I can only conclude your work will suffer and the sack is inevitable. Still take heart as you're stood in the dole queue that you introduced sput to Senser.

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Lol Zak I've gone insane - I came up with most of this on the commute in when some Bloc Party came up on shuffle.



I think I'm trying to get sacked before I take those five weeks off for my holiday, some sort of self destructive urge

One day I'll be recognised for my outstanding contribution to keeping the legacy of Senser alive

Rowan5215
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


36299 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Doof I'd put this above the self-righteous disaster that was Intimacy but below Weekend and Silent Alarm which are both classics of the genre

Crawl
July 1st 2015


1987 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Am I really the only one who thinks that Bloc Party were constantly very good? What do you think of the Nextwave Sessions, Doofus?

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Crawl I've not checked the Nextwave, will give it a listen and see what I think.



I see Bloc Party as one of those bands who probably spent a lot of time writing and touring the songs that made up the debut before releasing them and have struggled not having that same luxury again.

Rowan5215
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


36299 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nextwave has one hilariously shite song, two solid jams and two classics

Crawl
July 1st 2015


1987 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Ratchet - hilariously shite

Obscene and Montreal - classics

French Exist and Children - solid jams



To me it's kind of like this

Rowan5215
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


36299 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^ absolutely what I was saying yeah



Montreal is one of their top 15 probably

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

"hey-yay-yayeeer-yeaaah...and get rat shit" yeah is bad



Obscene is my pick of the bunch, Montreal is pretty good too - will download those two. Nicely atmospheric.



The rest...nah, not great

Point1
July 1st 2015


231 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I've always like "Day Four", mostly for the section at the end.

apokolypz
July 1st 2015


488 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

They went back to the sound their fans wanted instead of really just enjoying their progression with electronics, so I can see how it would sound dull and uninspired.

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Apok - I don't think this sounds like 'Silent Alarm' though, there's nothing like 'Luno', 'she's hearing voices' or 'this modern love' in style here really.

I think they tried to make a 'heavier' and 'more rock' album, that wasn't what Silent Alarm was about, and they really aren't suited to heavy rock

Arcade
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


7784 Comments


Silent Alarm never did anything for me so i'll stay away from this one

good review.

Digging: Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


8352 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Thanks Arcade - surprised you didn't like any of SA, it covers all indie bases, admittedly in a bit of an obvious 'tick box' way.

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
July 1st 2015


53504 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Silent Alarm is da best

Crawl
July 5th 2015


1987 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I probably prefer A Weekend



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