It is November, 2004 - about a month since 'Infinity Land' was released - and it is still in my cd player/car stereo/mp3. I must have listened to it at least 50 times already. Like the previous album 'Vertigo Of Bliss' it took a few listens to REALLY appreciate - but once you did, whooa, what an album.
Fast-forward to August 2007 - and, painfully, I must admit that the same cannot be said of their eagerly-anticipated fourth album, 'Puzzle'. It seems I am not alone in predicting this album would 'happen' at some point. After all, the group had said they were after a 'pop' album - relinquishing the 'screaming' from previous work - in favour of sheening production.
le Biff have always maintained that they try to do something "different" with each album - and in that sense - it cannot be argued that 'Puzzle' is different from all their other albums. That does not mean that it is better - quite the opposite in my view.
BUT - let's put things in perspective - this IS a good album - if you give this album 1 star then surely you must hate it & Biffy that much then what's the point of you being here? But 1 star? For goodness' sake people, this is still Biffy Clyro, not Bucks Fizz or Bananarama. It is a good album - but compared with previous Biffy albums - it is unquestionably their worst, for me. I hesitate to say least 'experimental' because technically, it is experimental - they have never made such a pop-oriented, clean-sounding album - and this is unfortunately where the Biffsters fall flat on their face, and end up sounding like they've run out of ideas for the magic pot of ingredients. Unless of course they just wanted to get a 'pop' album out of their system - only to return to 'Infinity Land' ways in the near future?!: Discuss.
There is absolutely no point in me analysing particular songs, lyrical mishaps or supposed un-imaginative song structures - that is personal to each listener. Hence, if you loved 'Blackened Sky' but thought 'Vertigo...' and 'Infinity...' were 'crapper' - you may like this album more than I do. Or you may not, who knows?
One of the other reviewers hit the nail on the head - I stuck it in my cd player/car stereo/mp3 for weeks on end - but still I fail to love this album. It just doesn't grab me the way previous albums have. A shame really, and I may be verging on optimism here but maybe, just maybe, we'll hear a swift return to the ways of le Biffy of old...
I'd also like to point out that I'm not ranting and raving that people shouldn't like this album - it is a personal opinion, so calm down before you go all semi-mental on me. If you love it, great. I don't, and that's fair enough, end of.