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32 Reviews
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular
Wild Beasts continue to make beautiful, artfully crafted music, with this album continuing the refinement of their style which we have seen through their first three. A must have.
Published 13 months ago by Rebekah Prentice

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I wish I loved it
I totally loved the first 2 Wild Beasts albums, especially 2 Dancers. Smother was a bit tame but still good.
When I heard Wonderlust I had high hopes because it's a great song but the rest of the CD left me with a sinking feeling. It's a bit dull to be honest.
Published 10 months ago by B. Byron


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5.0 out of 5 stars The exciting British Alternative-Indie band's lustful, sexually-charged fourth studio album, 11 May 2014
This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
Singer/guitarist Hayden Thorpe and singer/bassist Tom Fleming constitute one damn fine and distinguished songwriting team within the Alternative/Indie genre, and Wild Beasts' fourth full-length release, "Present Tense", is the British band's most ambitious, focused and accomplished album to date (as of 2014). Present Tense could very well be Wild Beasts' "Black Celebration", the album that took Depeche Mode to new heights, both creatively and commercially", with its tales of yearning, lust, and sexual debauchery, and its emphasis on both vintage and modern synth sounds. The album is a joy to listen to from start to finish: the songwriting, musicianship and production, it's all impeccable, and despite the sparse arrangements/instrumentation the songs all sound full-bodied and powerful.

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5.0 out of 5 stars EXCEPTIONAL, 9 April 2014
By 
B. Mehmet "birol40" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
An exceptional album that manages to surpass their previous releases. This is probably their most commercial and I've read reviews that have said it isn't as "raw" as their earlier work, but maybe it's time they broadened their appeal. It is difficult to choose a standout track as they are all clever creations, but if I had to pick it would be "A Simple Beautiful Truth" and "Sweet Spot" which I absolutely love.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and beautiful, 8 April 2014
By 
K. Anderson "katnip" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
I love love love everything about this album. My favourite of the year so far and their best to date.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best of 2014, 23 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
We are still in March. Early in the Music Year 2014. But this is a strong contender for the best of 2014 lists!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite as good..., 16 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
This isn't a bad album, but to me, these tracks don't have the emotive quality of those on their past albums. I feel like the band are more apt with their guitars than they are with synths, and you can see that in the great melodic lines in songs like Empty Nest (from two dancers) and End Come Too Soon (from Smother). This album doesn't seem to have that loose, imaginative feel that I loved from their past albums.

For this reason, tracks like Sweet Spot are real standouts, and tracks like 'Palace' or 'Wonder Boy' are good, but don't reach the heights of tracks that have made me consider Wild Beasts to be one of my favourite bands. Don't get me wrong, I don't think it's necessarily the instrumentation that's the problem- I just think that maybe the powerful synth sounds take a bit more priority over creating inventive and emotive melodies
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5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't think I'd like this as much as the other WB albums, 15 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
Didn't think I'd like this as much as the other WB albums.....how wrong I was! Can't stop listening to it! Perfect listening for when you're stuck in rush hour traffic too.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A modern classic, 16 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
The day before I heard this album for the first time I was struck by the 10/10 review on my favourite music site Line of Best Fit (which is no mean feat I may add). I had already been looking forward to the record, but that review pushed my expectations to dizzying heights. I'm happy to report that I wasn't disappointed!

As with many 4th albums, I feel 'Present Tense' very much condenses all the separate elements of the band's entire discography into a potent, polished whole. It doesn't have the same bravado as 'Two Dancers' but it isn't as subdued as 'Smother', although there are moments which challenge both extremes. Perhaps the most notable sonic change is the introduction of more synths, which are masterfully used to create a range of textures.

'Wanderlust' is a driving introduction which immediately introduces Wild Beast's new electronic sonic elements. Despite it's momentum it still feels like a 'soft' song with a lot of warmth to it.

'Nature Boy' is simply badass. The off kilter drum beat plods along as Haydens crooning snarl over a sprawling soundscape of clawing guitars and expansive synths.

'Mecca' is lead by Tom's softer vocals and it quickly builds into an awesome crescendo of rising synths and clattering drums. There is a suave momentum about it which is really held together by Tom's voice, and the ringing guitars they unleash after the bridge just sound... triumphant. This is one of those songs that you just can't get enough of.

'Sweet Spot' is more delicate than anything before it; the title sums it up well. The interplay between Hayden and Tom's vocals here is glorious, and there is a really classy synth line towards the end which gives the track an enjoyably retro edge.

'Daughters' is perhaps the darkest track on the record and carries a sinister air about it. It is fairly slow and Hayden leads vocals whilst the band creates atmosphere around him. The pleasure in this track is much about the details in it's soundscape, although it explodes into a 'destroyer of worlds' when a ricocheting synth is unleashed at the climatic moment.

'Pregnant Pause' is a total contrast of 'Daughters'; it is a gorgeously tender love song. Tom sings on this one and his vocal is really the centerpiece; the rest of the band keeps it fairly stripped back to emphasise this. It's the first song where Chris's drums don't dominate and I think the sparser feel gives the song a really supple tone.

'A Simple Beautiful Truth' is probably the best song I've heard this year. It combines everything that is great about this record. There is a simply wonderful airy synth hook which I could listen to for days on it's own. The drums clatter all over the place, but still sound refined and the bass riff gives it a great driving momentum. This track sees an interplay between both singer's vocals which is always a pleasure to hear, especially as both voices collide with an expansive wave of synthesised magic on the chorus.

'A Dog's Life' returns to a darker feeling after the elation of the last track. This track is has a great atmosphere and Hayden returns with some of the badass crooning he delivered back on 'Nature Boy'.

'Past Perfect' is one of my favourite tracks here. Tom provides a gorgeous vocal hook and the rest of the band create really spacious and warm soundscape which is filled with complex evolving details. It's exquisite.

'New Life' is the record's slowest track and would work very well as an album closer. Hayden sings over a reverbrating synth backdrop and the whole track builds to a desperate climax which still maintains remarkable restraint. Wild Beasts really use the minimum that they need to in order to create their shadowy atmosphere.

Whilst 'New Life' would make a great end to a remarkable record, Wild Beasts still have one more fascinating trick up their sleeves with 'Palace'. True to it's name, it is something of a sonic palace; like 'Mecca' there is a decidedly triumphant feeling here. The textured guitar line drives forward a delicate, expansive synth soundscape and Tom sings at the highest note he can muster. This is a true fuzzy goosebump song and a momentous album closer.

I haven't even mentioned the lyrics in this review, which I think are spectacular.

I love Wild Beast's previous work, but this is something else. I gave myself a good few weeks to digest the record unless time proved me wrong, but so far it shows no sign of wearing off on me. This is the best album I've heard since Janelle Monáe's 'ArchAndroid' in 2010, itself one of the best records for a good few years. This is no small claim either, because I listen to a lot of modern music with a very diverse sonic palette.

As if a bonus was needed, they are touring with East India Youth at the moment, who dropped an absolutely spectacular album in January. That live show will be a real spectacle, I can't wait to see it.

They really decided to 'reach a bit further' with this one...
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding work - dont just buy this one - the other albums are good too.........., 12 July 2014
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This review is from: Present Tense (MP3 Download)
New to Wild Beasts? Not Sure? Well I can tell you their 2nd,3rd and 4th albums are amazing quality.

Present Tense is great - Mecca at its heart is simply one of the best songs written this decade. Epic.
Smother - the previous album is a work of genius - every song has an edge - each track a hybrid
of sparkling 80s pop synth and brooding melancholic rock sensibilities.
Two Dancers - outstanding record - more catchy than the others I suppose, but ever so idiosyncratic,
soft in places but also powerful and intense.

They are quite simply my new favourite band and that's only been the case for about two weeks.
I am listening to all 3 albums at once and I can tell you that they have a unique quality - an edge,
whilst also reminding me of such favourite acts as Anthony and The Johnsons (falsetto and in terms
of melancholic / surreal style) and even muse - rampaging tunes with a sense of heaviness
in places. The boys doing the singing get their harmonies just right but what stands out is just
the sheer quality of their song writing.

They are a sensitive band without being cheesy or over egging it - they also take risks on
each album. Rocking on but also making beautiful sounds that will lift your spirits.
They tackle lots of paranoid/ humanistic themes in their lyrics which strangely sits happily
with sometimes very cheerful or tinkly riffs.

If you are new to Wild Beasts then I would buy this, but at the same time get the previous two
albums and listen to them all together.....it really is that good.

Fave tracks on Present Tense are Wanderlust, dMecca, Pregnant Pause, A Dogs Life and Past Perfect.
Faves on Smother are Lions Share, Bed of Nails, Loop The Loop, Reach A Bit Further
Faves on Two Dancers, The Fun Powder Plot, We Still Got The Taste Dancin' On Our Tongues, Two Dancers (i)

Though I must add I struggle to find a weak track at the moment.

And no I have not listened to their debut yet........I'm saving that one for the summer holidays......
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5.0 out of 5 stars Cleverness, 7 Aug. 2014
This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
Cleverness - what a joyous trip these wordsmiths continually deliver, all wrapped in an array of notes and sounds..
Real wonderlust.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Dull and dreadful, 17 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Present Tense (Audio CD)
Simply dreadful.Each song is like the previous one on the album - very little to differentiate. Irritiating vocals. Regret buying this.
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Present Tense by Wild Beasts (Audio CD - 2014)
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