THE STROKES First Impressions Of Earth (2006 UK 14-track CD album - Their eagerly awaited third album which was co-produced with David Kahne & Gordon Raphael [who produced the first two albums] and recorded in New York over 10 months. The album includes the singles Juicebox Heart In A Cage You Only Live Once. Housed in a deluxe tri-fold die-cut digipak picture sleeve with 32-page booklet)
This album comes in luxury packaging for a limited period: a six panel digi-pack, die-cut front with three inserts and a 32 page booklet.
The Strokes have taken to fame with a cheer most politely described as grudging, but not even front-cover adulation and celebrity girlfriends can crack these New Yorkers mojo. On their third album, First Impressions Of Earth, Casablancas and company turn heel on the bristly, familiar feel of 2003s Room On Fire, and concentrate on evolving their sound.
The albums lead single--the prowling, Cramps-inspired rocknroll number "Juicebox"--is something of a red herring. However, songs like the triumphant "You Only Live Once" or "On The Other Side", are born in the crisp, synthetic spirit of the early 80s new wave. Two particular moments stand out: "Heart In A Cage" is a drifting, melancholy proto-punk number in the spirit of Berlin-era Iggy Pop, while "Ask Me Anything" unfurls as something of a solo piece, frontman Julian Casablancas emoting over a restrained backdrop of synth and strings. The album sags a little towards the end (with the building, passionate "Fear Of Sleep" a definite exception), but as a whole, First Impressions Of Earth finds The Strokes fulfilling all that early promise and displaying a slow-evolving longevity that few would have ascribed to them.--Louis Pattison
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