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reviews /  member album review
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Bloc Party- Silent Alarm
by: alternativemalta  21 may 05
rating: rating of 5

Rock your Bloc Off
Bloc Party- Silent Alarm

Probably the most defining moment in Bloc Party’s debut album “Silent Alarm” is 1:37 into the song ‘Positive Tension’ where frontman Kele Okereke belts out ‘something glorious is about to happen’. Whether it refers to his band or not, this is the general feeling of this album.
Ever since I heard the single ‘Banquet’ (also reviewed on this website) back in May 2004 I knew that this band would go places and I was right.
Magazine coverage, mentioned by other bands, being slagged by Liam Gallagher, and now I read that Death From Above 1979 are going to cover ‘Luno’ as well - respect.
Now when I review an album I always give the band a chance. I listen to the CD constantly until it sinks but in the case of ‘Silent Alarm’ I’ve listening to it since its release date in February, just to make sure that the album will stick through the hype that the band is receiving. Now that its May 2005 I can safely say that this album is no flash in the pan but fully lives up to the attention that this wonderful London four piece is getting.
In fact ‘Silent Alarm actually surprises at some points, as there are ‘tender songs’ (‘Blue Light’), electronic bits (check out the sound effects in opener ‘Like Eating Glass’) and their trademark spiky sound (third single ‘Helicopter’ and ‘Price of Gasoline’ – a Gang of Four reference?). So yes, there is variety for the listener, and those uninitiated to Bloc Party’s b-sides may even be shocked that the band is so versatile.
As a lyricist Okereke likes to state that Bloc Party (as their name suggests) have a political agenda, but there is their soft side where songs about love do battle. So for every ‘The Pioneers’ (if it can be lost it can be won ... go stick your bloody head in the jaws of the beast) there is a ‘This Modern Love’ (what a beautiful song!) cropping up.
Alas “Silent Alarm is not a perfect album. It is two tracks too long, and maybe their earliest recording ‘She’s Hearing Voices’ is now out of place. However it is a near perfect album, and for a debut these are just some minor blips that will be ironed out come album two.
One thing which is on Bloc Party’s side is their blinding ambition which sears through the duration of “Silent Alarm” and which frankly I haven’t really heard since Radiohead’s sophmore album ‘The Bends’. Actually Bloc Party are one step better for they nailed it on the first try.
Along with the new crop of English post-punkers namely Franz Ferdinand and The Futureheads, Bloc Party have made their mark upon music. I also have the feeling that these guys may move to bigger pastures in the near future and that their masterpiece is in the making. Really don’t be a fool like me and worry about crap like this. “Silent Alarm” is as good as good can get, and trust me, for something so silent it is definitely being heard in many, many places.
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