Monday, March 10, 2008

4.) Silent Alarm - Bloc Party (ST. PATTY'S 2008)

Silent Alarm

Bloc Party
Vice Records.

SCQ Rating: 79%

The opening guitar coda on ‘Like Eating Glass’ acts precisely like an beacon, a pulsating combination of tones that announces itself like any non-silent alarm would. And if that nearly unravels the significance of this debut’s title (being what one hears at the on-set of quarter-life crisis, says vocalist Kele Okerere), Silent Alarm undresses the very notion of becoming complacent and grabbing at a picket fence.

Urgency is what keeps this album on the brink at all times; ‘This Modern Love’ only proves to be romantic at its tail-end, while ‘Positive Tension’ showcases Bloc Party in their separate talents before combining like an A+ chemistry lab; Matt Tong’s unmistakable drumming, deep bass grooves, the effect-laden guitar and Okele’s bark. The stability displayed here is what makes sophomore A Weekend in the City feel lopsided; here, no song structure is set in stone – the tempo is always shifting.

A bit overwhelming at fourteen songs, Silent Alarm could’ve lost some of its back end and left us wanting more. By ‘Compliments’ however, even the band sound exhausted, which surprisingly leads to a fresh detour into sonic haziness. It’s a decent comedown from a band whose strength is their potent energy, and also a glimpse into their recording future.

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