12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Found That Soul?, 25 May 2007
It was always going to be difficult to follow up a pair of Brit Award winners and with hindsight, this album was never really destined for commercial success. I wouldn't want to be a Manic Street Preacher though, it seems no matter what direction they choose people will complain - aggressively, about which way they go. I remember on the run up to the album's release and all the talk of a "return to our roots" which would please just about any Manics fan. I don't consider it a return to their roots. There's no Motown Junk or Stay Beautiful on here, the band have matured.
Know Your Enemy has a more political feel than many of the band's other albums. This is documented by songs like Baby Elian, Let Robeson Sing and Freedom Of Speech Won't Feed My Children.
Opener, Found That Soul acts as a fantastic, energetic, rocking start to the album with it's one note keyboard in the background creating a bit of tension in the song.
As an album, we have an eclectic mix of punk rock in Found That Soul, Dead Martyrs and Intravenous Agnostic - we have calm, solemn reflective songs Ocean Spray and Baby Elian and we still have space for a Beach Boys-esque song of miserable lyrics and upbeat music, and a disco song.
This album is a grower and certainly not one that could ever give an accurate representation of who the Manics are, yet it's fresh, it's fun in places and introspective in others. It'll never be a Manics fan's favourite album but it deserves top marks nevertheless.