Feeder have definitely found and settled into their niche sound, though there are some...
Sophie Bruce 2008
Welsh rockers Feeder say they still feel they have a lot to prove with their sixth studio album Silent Cry. Coming two years after a best-of release, lead singer Grant Nicholas says they didn't want to follow what some might have seen as a move towards retirement with a stale offering. Now in their sixteenth year as a band – though current line up Grant, Taka and Mark have only been together since original drummer Jon's suicide in 2002 – they have definitely found and settled into their niche sound, though there are some fresh ideas on Silent Cry.
Feeder have certainly reached a point where they are not beholden to a record company's whims. They chose to launch this album with an intimate gig for just 400 fans at Camden's Proud Galleries. It's certainly difficult to pigeonhole them, as their festival line-up this summer shows. Classic rock fests like T In The Park and Tokyo's Fuji Rock sit alongside the perhaps more surprising addition of teeny pop fest T4 On The Beach.
The first single is the album's opener We Are The People, which Grant deems a ‘positive and non-violent call to arms’. It's certainly an emotive track, though more for fans of Feeder's dirgey Comfort In Sound material than those who prefer their upbeat offerings like Buck Rogers.
There are, though, plenty of tracks with a more positive pop-rock vibe. Easily shoutable anthemic choruses like those on Heads Held High will be a hit for fans of potential gig singalongs. Into The Blue is stylish, sexy pop rock. Meanwhile the brilliant Fires will inevitably provoke swaying lighters held aloft come tour time, with the repetitive, hypnotic lines "she lights the fire, she lights the fire".
New listeners will find lots to like in Silent Cry's balanced mix of upbeat rock and downbeat anthems, while long-time fans will find their heroes newly inspired and refreshed, but not unrecognisably altered. Grant calls this album ‘a step towards fulfilling what is left to achieve for the band, but also a step towards their roots’. It could easily have been a case of two steps forward and one step back, but that it's definitely not.