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Hopes and Fears

4.8 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Audio CD, 28 May 2007
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Product details

  • Audio CD (28 May 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal / Island
  • ASIN: B000QRI5RM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,656 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Somewhere Only We Know
  2. Bend & Break
  3. We Might As Well Be Strangers
  4. Everybody's Changing
  5. Your Eyes Open
  6. She Has No Time
  7. Can't Stop Now
  8. Sunshine
  9. This Is The Last Time
  10. On A Day Like Today
  11. Untitled 1
  12. Bedshaped

Product description

BBC Review

Although formed in 1997 – and Brit Awards winners as long ago as 2005 – Keane still feel like Johnny-come-latelies, so regularly and roundly are they dismissed as anodyne bandwagon-jumpers and pink-cheeked, Coldplay wannabes.  It’s not hard to scoff at an internationally successful group of middleclass white chaps from patrician East Sussex, whose debut album was an instant UK number one and whose subsequent ascent seemed to involve about as much horny-handed dues-paying as an ex-Etonian sauntering onto the front bench of the Conservative Party.

In fact, versions of Keane had been slogging away on the toilet circuit for years before being picked up for a single on indie imprint Fierce Panda, in 2003. That single, Everybody’s Changing, gave the group their proverbial ‘overnight’ hit and a major label deal followed.  So far so conventional, perhaps, but history tends to overlook the wilful unorthodoxy of early Keane. They were, let’s not forget, a three-piece group who could afford the ‘luxury’ of a non-instrumentalist frontman and who eschewed guitars altogether.   

Everybody’s Changing – a universally accessible, 20-something whinge about being left behind by ones peers – remains the standout track on Hopes and Fears, the aforementioned chart-topper which was inescapable throughout summer 2004. On it, singer Tom Chaplin’s bruised chorister’s intoning comes across as not so much diffusion line Chris Martin as entry level Thom Yorke, with an added pinch of Bono and even a soupcon of Freddie Mercury in there for mainstream audience-sating good measure.   

The album’s under-heralded kingpin is Tim Rice-Oxley – his battery of keyboards providing chunky rhythm, chiming contrapuntal melody and pulsing low end on undeniably hook-laden, deluxe indie-rock anthems like Somewhere Only We Know and Bend and Break. Indeed, there is no shortage of song craft here, and only the closing Bedshaped seems to truly justify Keane’s reputation for wetness – its lyrics of teenage diary self-doubt unmitigated by Oxley’s odd, Theremin-like tones or Richard Hughes’ vigorous drumming. Chaplin’s wanly emoting falsetto, just about credible elsewhere, here sounds aggravatingly ersatz and it suddenly becomes clear why, while some would canonise Keane, others just want to give them a good slap. --David Sheppard

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

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Great band ! Does exactly what it says on the tin !
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Hopes and Fears is Keane's debut album....and what a debut it is! This band are what real music is about! They breathe life into every single track and Tom Chaplin's voice is out-of-this-world! He has an amazing vocal range and is note-perfect. Their sound is very much individual with hints of Travis or Snow Patrol style. Every track is a stunner but the one's that stand out for me are: Everybody's Changing,Sunshine,Bend and Break,This Is The Last Time,and the beautiful etheral ballad Bed-shaped. All tracks are written by the band and there is no doubt in my mind that keane will reach the top with this album. Good honest pop music at it's VERY best.
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This album is an incredible example that quality and beauty have no patterns. This album has that kind of great-simple-but-intense songs that make your day, make you think and make you feel in love of music once again. A masterpiece.
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What`s not to like about it.
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Propelled by fairly simple piano chords coupled with the strong pure angelic voice of Tom Chaplin, then Keane, via this their debut album, sent shock waves throughout the indie scene. Opening track 'Somewhere Only We Know', basically using a minor chord progression F#m, C#m, Bm then E, coupled with someone who can actually sing, plus thoughtful lyrics "Oh simple thing where have you gone? I'm getting old and I need something to rely on", is one of the strongest numbers heard in years. 'This Is The Last Time' continues that high level - they develop a powerful beat on the CD with the piano being pushed slightly more into the background. With the virtually ditto sounding 'Bend And Break' and quieter 'We Might As Well Be Strangers', then there's a slight dip in the momentum & the signs of a musical sameness, but don't worry because 5th track 'Everybody's Changing' takes us back up again...those simple high-pitched piano chords being pushed to the forefront in the production...excellent number "Oh everybody's changing and I don't feel the same". 'Your Eyes Open' is more mysterious, but again that solid beat is there with piano chords bouncing around. Pianist Rice-Oxley said that this song initially resembled something Kylie Minogue might attempt. The delicate 'She Has No Time' follows, with Tom Chaplin's voice reminding of Geneva's Andrew Montgomery. Final four tracks continue the high standards 'Can't Stop Now', 'Sunshine', 'Untitled 1' & 'Bedshaped', with in particular the latter two being both really quite brilliant. Bathe yourself in this ocean of melodic indie power pop.
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This is a superb album, superb because of its sheer musicality, style and understated beauty. There are big, hefty tracks and one or two more melancholic and quieter songs, but each has purpose and style. Honestly, and at this price, do yourself a massive favour - buy it, you won't be disappointed.
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It was back in March 2004 at four Travis (Travis being a major influence on Keane which is evident throughout there music) gigs where I first heard of Keane as they were the suopport band and one of the best If not the best support band I have ever seen support anyone! What first struck me was of course Tom Chaplin's amazing voice! and the fact the band were guitarless but never the less there whole set blew me away I mean Somewhere Only We Know has to be one of the best opening tracks ever on a debut album!

I knew after seeing Keane as the support band I knew theses guys were the next big thing and supremely talented in a world where people seem to like the dull bland FAKE manufactured rubbish filling the charts and they rave about it as most people cannot see it. Keane are for me as they were in 2004 still the best brit pop band to have emerged in the UK

It amazed me seeing the brit awards in 2005 where Keane won best group and best album. Even The presenters for the TV seemed shocked that the dull Franz Ferdinand never won it tut tut well I will tell you your wrong it was totally deserved for Keane to take the award.

People including the media press and critics and music SNOBS seem to have it in for Keane from day one as there not seen as cool because they don't conform to this silly rock attitude in this country where if you have a bad attitude your loved regardless of your music talents EG Oasis. But I say you are wrong! why dislike a band purely on the "UNCOOL" factor. Keane make Inspiring upbeat energetic music that energises me everytime I listen to there albums. There is nothing better than listening to a Keane album in the gym doing a workout seems to motivate me to another level.

Anyways there is not a single duff track anywhere on this album again anyone who rated the album 1 2 or 3 stars you are wrong and you should hang your head in shame!
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This is the first Keane album and I love it. I bought it when it first came out several years ago and it is still top of my list of albums to listen to. Buy it!
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