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Another Groundbreaking Album
Bloc Party fans have awaited the arrival of Intimacy, the band's third studio LP, with a mix of excitement and trepidation. Where their debut Silent Alarm (produced by Paul Epworth) was universally touted as a modern classic, 2007's follow up A Weekend in the City, produced by Jacknife Lee, was equally flamboyant yet patchier. Intimacy is helmed by both Lee and Epworth and the brittle contours, mish-mash of influences and semi-awkward lyrics are quintessential Bloc Party. Mixing up everything from micro-house and dub-step to indie rock and electro pop, there's a willful energy here reminiscent of the band's debut, though the spikier elements remind more of AWITC. Opening cut "Ares" sets out the band's stall with a bombastic brew of high-energy drums, preening guitars and urgent sirens, while upbeat lead single "Mercury," employs a quirky astrological motif. These prove to be the most charged tracks on the record as elsewhere the band indulge in choral-chanting and strings ("Zephyrus"), angsty art-rock ("Halo") and a surprisingly uplifting finale in the shape of "Ion Square". Intimacy, as we should have guessed, is predictably unpredictable: knowingly difficult, defiantly angular yet eminently likeable. --Danny McKennaSee all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
When an album comes along that divides opinion so profoundly the one thing you can't accuse it's creators of is resting on their laurels and playing it safe, and obviously the comparisons with Radiohead aren't far behind for any band daring to experiment or change direction, being as they are, arguably, the benchmark by which musical innovation often seems to be judged. From the moment Ares kicks things off to the closing Ulrich Schnauss inspired strains of Ion Sqaure bleeding out of the speakers this album grips without letting go. Tracks like Halo, Trojan Horse, One Month Off & Talons are like a jackhammer to the solar plexis, punchy, tightly executed guitar driven slabs of utter adrenalyn fueled power. Scattered among the high octane riffing of the former are beautifully conceived moments of melancholy such as Biko and Signs, a brace of songs which give this album an extra dimension, the dreamlike glockenspiel and plantive electronic bassline of the latter providing an anchor to Okereke's mournful falsetto vocals.Read more ›
In an era that celebrates terrible artists like Katy Perry and Jon Mayer, we should feel lucky to have a Bloc Party to offer us quality.
The truth is, this album is absolutely excellent. From Silent-Alarm-like songs like "Talons", "Halo" and "Trojan Horse" (three songs produced by original producer Paul Epworth), to excellent and very original songs like "Better Than Heaven", "Ion Square" and "Signs" (a wonderful track featuring a glockenspiel and a mellotron), the album delivers over and over again.
Many people are one-dimensional. They want Bloc Party to look to the past and make "Silent Alarm" over and over and over again. We already have a Silent Alarm, move on. I love Silent Alarm passionately, but let's evolve with the band.
To be fair, I don't care much for the opening track "Ares", a high-powered song obviously made for fans to get crazy at live shows, but the rest of the album is fantastic.
Bloc Party continues to excite... they continue to innovate. You should flat-out ignore these so-called fans who want Bloc Party to have a career consisting of fifteen Silent Alarm albums, and open up your mind and you'll be rewarded. I've been mentioning these songs and have already been excited, and I haven't even mentioned the album's finest track "Biko" yet.
I miss Matt's drums too, but they'll return. I mean, Bloc Party always evolve, they always innovate, and if they continue to make electronic music over and over again, that's stagnation, which Kele openly opposes.
Funny, recently, a few people have marked my review as 'not helpful'. Funny that those very people wrote comments about how it doesn't sound exactly like "Silent Alarm". I rest my case.
At first I thought that 'Ares' was pretty poor, but its really grown on me. It sounds a bit Chemical Brothers and is really high energy.
I really respect the fact they have moved on from what was a very popular and lucrative style and expanded into different styles without losing the plot.
There are songs that will appeal to silent alarm lovers Talons, Halo, Trojan Horse and Zepherus, but even these have a much more electronic sound.
Im trying to pick a standout track, and Halo would be the easy answer on first listen, but the more i listen the more difficult it becomes.
This is an album for the car, the gymn, the bedroom and the party; buy it!
Firstly, the album itself got no favours from the band by having a low-ley release. Secondly, the choice of Mercury as lead single was brave to put it mildly. Foolish to put it more pragmatically.
Thirdly, they go and put the weakest two tracks at the start of the album. And not just week tracks, tracks that risk putting people off. They are brash, awkward, experimental and difficult.
Especially given the majesty that follows. Any of the following 8 tracks would have made a better single choice than Mercury.
The music that follows is on a par with most of what Radiohead have released in the noughties. It's true that Kele doesn't have nearly as great a voice as Thom Yorke but he manages to conjure beauty, none-the-less.
Signs, Trojan Horse, Better than Heaven, Zepherus, Talons, Biko - there you have 6 songs that are filled with multiple ideas.
Signs is just the most beautiful thing they have ever done, all minor key with heartbreaking lyrics.
Talons you probably know but it equally complex with clarity and space that is way beyond the work of most other bands.
Trojan Horse has an addictive chorus and an exhilaration guitar solo.
Zepherus is dark and seductive and reminds me of Bjork.
Better than Heaven is an electo-tinted dream with a fantastic climax.
Biko is all keening and longing.
If, like me, you were disappointed in A Weekend in the City then you might fall in love with this.
And outstanding album and nearly as great as Silent Alarm. I listened to it yesterday and am still dumbfounded by it's lack of success.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
There are some lovely tracks on here (Biko, Letter to my son) and some great rock tracks too in an old skool bloc party way. Read morePublished on 9 Nov. 2012 by Ed-dean
What can you say. Bought this for as an xmas prezzy for my son..Did not check if disc was in case,so my own fault, but no disc ic case. Not a good prezzy at all....Published on 1 Jan. 2010 by A. Sumnall
In my opinion this album could have been great, but sadly, due to a couple of duff songs, a lack of tempo balance, and a bad running order, it doesn't work as an album... Read morePublished on 2 Sept. 2009 by Mr. S. Bennett
I rate Bloc Party's debut Silent Alarm as one of the greatest albums ever. Its sound and production bring to mind early 80's post-punk while still sounding very original. Read morePublished on 30 May 2009 by ARL
I'm a huge fan of Bloc party, and coulded wait for Intimacy.
From the first listen of this amazing album I was blown away, Id heard it was going to be like there first outing... Read more
Having heard a lot of mediocre reviews of the album i was quite reluctant to buy it considering i have all their other albums, then as it appeared quite cheap on amazon i thought... Read morePublished on 18 Mar. 2009 by Mr. R. Maguire
Excellent album from Bloc Pary and easy to down load the mp3 from the amazon website.Published on 17 Mar. 2009 by C. Milton
This album certainly marks a huge change in musical direction for Kele and co., and that is evident from the outset. Read morePublished on 14 Mar. 2009 by James Mcwilliam Woods