Top positive review
7 people found this helpful
intricate, substantial and compelling.
on 15 October 2009
Editors continue their path for artistic integrity and musical freedom by going wherever they want, and doing whatever they want. Seemingly created absent from any considerations of how many this will sell, this, their third record, is their apex of achievement. Whilst some people think a band like Coldplay may be vaguely edgy, Editors are off in another orbit by dispensing with guitars almost completely and relying on a brave new world made of a tight, coiled rhythm section and a crescendo of synth sweeps seemingly carved from the soft, home made Tandy kits last seen on early New Order records.
Whilst the voice is intact and present, and the lyrical concerns the same, a usual palette of coastal wind, an absent God, a bullet, and light, Editors are clearly - wether they want to admit it or not - influenced by Joy Division, but also, in these songs and to these ears, keenly trained in the dynamics of Garage Rock, Kraftwerk, and the Brian Eno. Keyboard motifs rise and fall, simple and straightforward, but never inane or anything less than intricate, substantial and compelling.
Having seen these new songs performed live to a somewhat indifferent crowd, I can confirm that exposure and repeated listening are integral to these songs. Editors songs are not instant grooves, but carefully constructed and intelligent creations that reveal their mysteries and depths slowly. There are moments - the midpoint-break of "Papillion" and "Bricks And Mortar" - where, for those us with a large memory are reminded of Depeche Mode's mid 80's high point, built around images that are merely fragments of a larger story. Here, "It kicks like a Sleeptwitch" speaks at a level as profound as the words "Miles To Go". The human mind is smart enough to fill the gaps.
The story behind these songs are, like all great art, questing, searching, looking for something. There's a question in the heart of everything, for no sane being can truly admit they know everything : or even enough to be satisfied.
For those of you who are adamant that Editors are depressed guitar rock, it is time to scoff. There is nary a guitar on this record at all - though there is something that could be a guitar on "You Don't Know Love" - akin to the quantum leap between "Movement" and "Power Corruption And Lies", where the world expanded, the leap from black and white to colour.
Some records you grab hold of at first listen, and come back to you for years and years and years. This is one of those records. Free of padding, filled with vision and compelling songwriting - whilst aware of history, and unafraid to walk in the shadow of their influences, Editors also make these influences their own, and create something new as a result. A triumph.