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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Bring It On was an incredible introduction to Gomez with its quirky ups and downs and spine-tingling Ottewell vocals. Liquid Skin was a great follow-up with Gomez bringing on the long jams. With In Our Gun, Gomez shows us how well they can clean-up.
The songs are so tight and pieced together perfectly that you can listen to "Sound of Sounds" over and over for the harmonies as much as you want--it doesn't drag on and ends where it should. There is no need to put your finger on the fast forward button here. The same goes for every other song on the album. "Army Dub" gets your heart pounding and imbeds the melody in your brain for the following 72 hours. How many more times can I listen to "Rex Kramer?"
Being a Gomez loyal, I've been foaming at the mouth for something new and the wait was completely worth it. Nonstop listening has been my guilty pleasure since I got it. (Now if I could only see them live.)
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on 29 March 2002
The way this seems to go is - you either love Gomez's old stuff, and hate this because you feel that this is a departure,
or, you love Gomez's old stuff and feel that this is the next logical step.
I'm in the latter category - all the albums before (even the b-sides and oddities) were just brilliant - but all the ideas on Gun are there - the electronica, drum machine etc. There's nothing massively new in this. It's more catchy, definitely, and possibly the grit has gone from the earlier recordings, but as far as dragging guitar music into the present is concerned, Gomez are peerless (maybe Radiohead are up there, but they're using fewer and fewer guitars all the time).
Every track on this album drips with feeling, soul, intelligence and warmth. Not to say that the mood isn't varied, because it runs the gamut.
Simply - if you like soulful but modern music, then this is a great antidote to the terrible, TERRIBLE bland r&b dross which seems to permeate modern music...
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on 5 February 2002
Gomez have created quite a clever album here; it is true that whatever they write will be good because they have the power and the ideas to carry it off, but this is particularly fine. It carries that new, punchy, almost over-mastered quality which is reminiscent of the new Eels release 'Souljacker' last year. Those Gomez fans who liked the Machismo EP will enjoy more of the same, with the old sound of Pick Up The Pieces and Step Inside thrown in for good measure. Those of you who remember Gomez as 'that band that sang that song about Piccadilly' then approach this with an open mind; it's not that you missed out of the evolution of Gomez - they just move very quickly.
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on 5 April 2003
You can tell Gomez are at least one of the best British bands around because their fans are almost always bordering fanatical, and because they so divide the British music press, many claiming how boring and unoriginal they are. And whilst Thom Yorke and co. spend much time telling the music press how little they care about the music press, Gomez let actions speak louder than words and concentrate on the music.
And so I write this review as one of those borderline fanatical fans, one year on from it's release and the first thing to say is how different it is from the other two.
Starting positively, their is a lot more in the mix this time than before. Whilst blues and harmonies still hold center stage as before, they're having to share the limelight much more with beats and electronica. It's not as laid back as bring it on or liquid skin, and has more immediacy and urgency than either it's predecessors. Sadly, I also feel it lacks the togetherness and the slow-burner feel of the previous two as a result. To sum up, the track listing is longer but the running time is shorter.
The album starts fantastically with shot shot, a heady brew of all things Gomez compressed into 2 minutes and held together by a simple guitar riff. From then on the album switches between tracks of traditional Gomez (Even song, Mile's end), wierd new poppish electronica (Army Dub, Ruff Stuff) and some hybrid of the two. It is the latter that works best and the album does contain amongst the best Gomez songs to date. Rex Kramer is a standout track, Ben Ottewell singing a classic Gomez melody over alternating electronic backing and guitar line which builds brilliantly verse by verse. Ping one down is very good as well, built on similar foundations. The euphoric harmonies of Drench and Sound of Sounds are in my opinion the best new addition to the Gomez arsenal, and other stand outs inlcude In Our Gun (what a baseline) and balad of Nice and Easy.
However an album is more than just the sum of it's parts and this is missing something that I feel the other two had. It is still one of the albums of the year and one for all the fans, but not their best offering to date. I love the blues so will name Even song as my favourite track and go and listen to Bring it on. "I love this city, but this city's killing me..."
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on 22 February 2003
Just wanted to say that if you like the first two albums, but have put off buying this album, DON'T BE! The only supposed fans who have slated this are in my opinion missing the point.
Gomez's greatest virtue is that in this world of manufactured identikit boybands and made-to-a formula pop songs, Gomez are ignoring all commercial sensibilities and creating something new. Their first two albums showed this, and this merely continues their experimentation. Yes there's more "production" but so what? How good would Dark Side Of The Moon be if it was a bunch of acoustic 3 minute sing-alongs? What if The Beatles had talked George Martin out of experimenting with studio techniques when making Sgt Peppers? As long as the soul and melody of the song isn't lost (and it isn't) then the studio merely extends the boundaries within which the musician can realise their ideas.
Open your mind as well as your wallet.
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on 9 April 2002
Lucky I bought this before I read the music press! Ignore all of them - they thrive on finding a niche and plugging it (hey, I know they need to make a living, but it matters) and Gomez delight in dark stews thrown together by voodoo chefs somewhere between London and New Orleans with Calcutta inbetween. I was thrilled by its lurching and then driven bluesy psychedelia and new electronic moodiness - if I have to read one more rock purist hellbent in their quest for authenticity - I respected the talent but had a little trouble with the rootsy escapism of their first albums - this time they're in the streets and feeling less warmed on the porch. I say: throw away the puritanism and expand thy mind and body with this restlessly brilliant gem!
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on 20 March 2002
Although not as good as Liquid Skin and the sublime Bring It On, this album is still leagues beyond almost everthing else out there. I bought the album, put it on and lay on my bed staring at the ceiling until it finished 50 minutes later occasionally saying things like, ooh this is GOOOD! And it is. From the catchy Shot Shot to the wonderfully sad tititular track, In Our Gun, this album touches all the right nerves. It does lack some of the sublety of their earlier albums, particulaly Bring It On, despite or perhaps because of the huge budget that was obviously spent on its production. Strange electronica which precedes most tracks, but which then fades into the background as soon the guitar kicks in and Ben Ottewells gravel "I've been smoking since ciggaretes were invented" vocals lurch into life (and nobody can lurch quite like Gomez) does not lead to a particulaly balanced sound. This is not exactly the Gomez Kid A. That said, who needs another Kid A? This album will grab you attention from the off and will rarely let it wander. Ignore the occasional mediocre review, this is not a mediocre album. Go buy it now.
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on 17 May 2002
Welcome back to Gomez who have returned with their best album yet. It is a dramatic departure from what went before, but they have reinvented themselves in spectacular fashion. Traditional Gomez tracks - Even Song, 1000 times, Miles End sit brilliantly well with the more electronic styles of Army Dub, Ping One Down etc. In Our Gun and Sound of Sounds are gorgeous. The vocals and musicianship are the strongest yet. Gomez have always been good songwriters, now they have become great songwriters, as this album is less lyrically ambiguous, they say what they have to say and move on. The 6 minute songs have gone - they're for live gigs now, making for a much more solid and neat sounding album. This shift in style could have been a disaster, but Gomez have made an electronics tinged rock album, that could only have been made by Gomez. Britain should thank Gomez not knock them!! Own this album now!!
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on 18 August 2004
Why do so many people criticise this album? It is not the same as their stunning debut and follow up, Bring It On and Liquid Skin. But who wants a third album of the same? Taken on its own this album does need a few listens to get into, but you then realise it is a slow-burning classic. It can be a tad weird, but the basic three-part harmony style and the experimental instrument selection give Gomez away in each song. This really is a fantastic album, buy it!
To finish, a tip: if you liked the first two Gomez albums and are struggling with this one, listen to the offcuts album 'Abandoned Shopping Trolley Hotline' which gives some insight into the bands' experimenting with their own tunes and other bits and pieces. It helps to link the original Gomez sound with their newer material, and is also really rather good.
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on 8 March 2016
A lot of criticism for some of the albums that came after Liquid Skin & Bring it On maybe so but I've followed them from the start & i won't be swayed ok its not quite as good as the previously mentioned but Gomez are a one off & to me there music is pure class & to me that's all that matters .
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