Top positive review
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Ignore the critics, make up your own mind
on 2 January 2006
As I'm typing, it's early in the morning, so in the UK the new Strokes album has officially been released. Already, I've seen critics dismiss this album as "average" and many have claimed The Strokes have put very little effort into the album and they're just not bothered anymore. I've had a copy of the album for around a month now and I'm going to share my opinion of the album, this review is coming from someone who has had the time to fully analyze the album, not from some small time music journalist who has given it a quick listen and dismissed it as "rubbish". One thing many Strokes fans will notice right from the very first track is there's no longer any use of distortion on the vocals.
Anyway, this album took 9 months in the studio with a new producer, David Kahne, which has helped them take a side-step in sound, whilst retaining their classic sound. The album is a big change in style, but you can still recognize the good ol' Strokes.
The first song on the album 'You Only Live Once' is probably the best intro track they could have chosen. It is one of the most catchy tracks on FIOE with its memorable riff and bouncy vocals. 4.5/5
Juicebox, the first single from FIOE is in my opinion, one of the "worst" tracks on the album. I'm not saying it's a bad song, in fact, I love it but, there are many more suitable potential singles on the album which would have been more suitable for commercial radio. I'm sure you've all heard this song and can make up your own minds on what you think of it. 4/5
Heart In A Cage, their second single and also one of the heaviests songs on the album. In my opinion, this is a great song and sounds like a vintage Strokes track, as it is recycled from ROF. 5/5
Razorblade, infamous for "ripping off" the catch from Barry Mannilow's 'Mandy'. 'Tis a brilliant song, with a catchy 12:51 esque keyboard riff. 4/5
Vision of Division is absolute genius. A great riff with a Mid-Eastern SOAD influenced guitar solo half-way through. After reading the title and the lyrics booklet, I actually realized that this song is a conversation, which explains why Julian tends to repeat verses. One of the strongest tracks on the album. 5/5
Ask me anything, is shrouded in controversy and it's unlike anything The Strokes have ever done. Many people believe this track should be nothing more than a B-side, however, I think it's great. Albert plays a melatron, along to Julian's cool vocals and guess what? There aren't any guitars or drums!!! 4/5
Electricityscape borrows a similar sound from Vision of Division and also sounds very Middle-Eastern. Another one of the heavier tracks. 4.5/5
15 minutes, is a wonderful track, but like "On The Other Side" it's a grower and the track is relatively weak throughout the first couple of minutes and only gets to full strength towards the end of the song, which is dissapointing, as I feel this track could have been a standout if it weren't for the boring intro.
Ize of the world has a fabulous ending which causes many people to question whether their disc has a fault or not. No, don't worry, there's nothing wrong with your disc at all. Opens with some random guitar noises and is relatively heavy throughout. The lyrics in this song are amazing and also, there is a solo half-way through that sounds like an ice cream van! How cool is that?
Evening Sun feels a bit strange following such a heavy track, but is still a great song, takes a few listens to get into, but it's now one of my faves. 4.5/5
Red Light is one of the best tracks on the album and is a great way to end such a fantastic record. 5/5
So, there you go. That's just what I think of the album, I wasn't very descriptive with my review but I didn't want to spoil too much. All I can say is that this album is just as good as Is This It and Room On Fire, if not better. Also, this album is roughly an hour long. The special edition of the album comes in nice carboard packaging with an interchangeable sleeve which allows you to put a pic of one of the band members on the cover, which is a good enough reason to buy the album if you ask me!
If you don't like what you've heard about this album but you've enjoyed The Strokes previous work, please give this album a chance. Thank you for reading my review and I hope you have found it helpful.