Between 2004-2007 there seemed to be a boom of great bands emerging from the UK. Arctic Monkeys, The Fratellis, Franz Ferdinand, The Kooks, Bloc Party… I could go on, but those five were arguably the biggest. One thing these bands share is a tremendous debut album, but what has happened since? Well, with the (big) exceptions of Arctic Monkeys and Franz Ferdinand they’ve all sort of whimpered out. Now that brings us to Bloc Party, whose debut album remains one of my favorites to this day. Silent Alarm was a tremendous record, and they have released a few decent once since, Four being the most recent. Their newest release Hymns shows us just how far the band has fallen.
Now let’s get one thing straight, Hymns isn’t a bad album by any stretch. It’s not a good one either. It is one of the most average, uninspiring, underwhelming albums I’ve ever heard. Play after play and nothing sticks, sure there are a couple of catchy tracks, such as the opener The Love Within or recent single Virtue, but nothing really gets me thinking about it when I’m not listening to it.
Hymns features a new look Bloc Party, featuring two new members. It is a new era for the band, and this shows with the new sound they have adopted. However the new sound feels less Bloc Party and more like Kele’s solo project, perhaps he’s planning a merger? We may never know, and we may also never see the band that came to life in such an incredible debut all those years ago.
With a new look to the band, Hymms could’ve been a real statement. Instead it settles for mediocrity.