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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 26 February 2013
ANNA seemed to receive mixed reviews upon its release, not just from critics (who I don't always rely on) but from fans of the band also. Some praised the change in direction, whilst others called the album a disappointment compared to their previous offerings. Therefore, before ordering myself a copy of the album I decided to try it out. I listened to the album via Spotify, bearing in mind the scepticism it had received, and found that the album has a lot to offer.
Opener `Are You In Love With A Notion?' kicks things off in a big way, with pounding drum beats, racing guitar riffs and a successful deployment of a "woah, woah" vocal refrain. It is a pacy number, with a sing-a-long chorus which should go down well at live gigs, and some great vocal hooks in the verses (use of the name Deborah, reminded me of Pulp's `Disco 2000', don't know if that's just me though).
Lead single `Lose Control' is very much a grower, not necessarily clicking with the listener first time around, perhaps due to the off-key, intoned vocals in the verses, or perhaps the more electronic sound compared to the previous albums. It seems an odd choice for the lead single, but it does at least have an energetic chorus which will likely be the first thing that clicks with listeners (the rest of the song grew on me after a while). Next up though is the stand-out track on the album `Van Der Graaff' which perfectly marries the band's new sound with Liam Fray's song-writing style.
Another highlight comes in the form of `Marquee' which sees Fray in similar territory to St. Jude's `Please Don't' although it seems that he has matured since then, and the band have set a more fitting backing track to the lyrics. The opening to `Welcome To The Rave' reminds me of the opening to James' `I Know What I'm Here For' and explores a similar territory. On `Money' there is a very satisfying command to the vocals on the "Sit down and shut your mouth" line that opens the chorus, unfortunately the track is a little uneven, which is a shame as it has a good hook. `Save Rosemary In Time' is better than the bad-pun of a title would suggest, but it is probably the weakest track on the album.
The band haven't lost their touch when it comes to catchy choruses, and Liam Fray's lyrics don't seem to have changed all that much, which allows for a sense of familiarity for those who are sceptical about the band's newly embraced `new wave' sound. ANNA is worth your money, a decent album with more good than bad; it certainly seems to have been composed with live performances in mind.
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on 28 February 2013
Another stomping, anthemic, sing a long record from the Courteeners. This band are vastly under rated, yet they allways produce the goods. See them live if possible, they do come over even better live. The concert I saw them at was a sell out and had been since just after the tickets went on sale, such was the demand. If you havn't got this album, buy it now. It really is well worth the money.
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on 11 September 2015
I wasn't sure about the courteeners initially, being surrorunded by teenagers fawning over "You're not 19 forever" kind of put me off.
However, if after 2 plays you don'd find yourself singing aloud to "Are you in love with a notion", then there is something seriously wrong with you. The catchy tunes are superb, the less catchy ones are far from filler.

This is a gem.
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on 4 February 2013
Spent most of Sunday (the day it was released) listening to this album.

On first listen I thought o, on second listen I thought hmm, on third listen I thought yeah and it just got better and better.

At first I thought it missed those anthemic tunes The Courteeners are famous for but they are here, just a little more subtle.

There are some great tunes here with some great hooks and lyrics.

Welcome back Liam and the lads!
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on 3 March 2013
Right I'll start off the review with, If you are expecting St Jude 2 or Falcon 2 you'll be let down. Like most bands the Courteeners have moved on and developed from Lad Rock rock football lovers to decent musicians looking to make it massive with Anthems.

Liam Fray is one of the Hardest working men in music but I think that's also his flaw. This is a decent album with some of the best songs he's written such as Van Der Graaff but It doesn't feel like this album flows like the other two.

The third album is always the hardest, Be here now by Oasis in opinion was dreadful. This is not a dreadful album nor is it amazing. Take the good songs from the album and wait for Album number four as this band have the potential to be massive.
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on 8 February 2013
Superb Album from a band that seems to be unable to reach there Target,nearly ever song on Anna is very upbeat an fast an slow songs so good to listen to,will definetly recommend this album to anyone,it would not suprise me if it reaches the Top of the Album charts in the up coming weeks,an no more singing of "You Almost Did It Doll" when it gets there
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on 8 February 2013
Critics/Journalists/'music connoisseurs' I believe have read to much into the 3rd album.
The 'Whoa's on a lot of the hooks and chorus' give it more reason to be a fans album than Falcon or St. Jude!
The Courteeners make music for the fans, for the gigs and the buzz both parties get at the live shows.
This album shows how The Courteeners have taken strides to similarly unique sounds that Coldplay, K.O.L, Snow Patrol put out.

Must buy!

Bring on the live gigs!
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on 9 February 2013
I was a massive fan of the Courteeners when I first heard their début album back in my uni days, now 5 years later we've had Falcon pass by being mostly miss-able and then the release of Anna.

This album is a huge let down, I honestly haven't heard a single good song on the album. I really wanted to like this album and lied to myself a little, thinking it would be a lot better better than this. If you're a big fan of their's then it's obviously worth checking out but if you only like a few of their songs then this album isn't likely to capture your imagination at all.
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on 29 September 2014
This album was eagerly anticipated by every courteeners fan out there but if I'm going to be honest, this was a let down. i
This albums sees The Courteeners take a new direction of arena rock with soaring guitars, loud echoing vocals and a full sound, and despite that sounding as mouth watering as it seems.. it doesn't quite work in some areas.
The album kicks off to a great start with Are You In Love With A Notion followed by the song which started this new era off Lose Control, and this form continues with Push Yourself. But the best song by far on this album is Van Der Graff, which can only be described as beautiful and elegant.
But yet this string of top class songs doesn't go any further. it stops, and goes down hill. a very very steep hill, very fast.
Welcome To The Rave is the sort of song which you do not want to hear when recovering from a hangover, with it's incredibly childish sounding keyboard. And songs such as Save Rosemary In Time, Marquee and Want Something You Can't Have are just plain boring. And the one song which I find unbareable to listen to is Money. It's a song which you'd think was made for some hollywood western flop and that when recording it Liam was wearing a cowboy hat.
Don't get me wrong the album does pick up in form with songs such as Sharks Are Circling and Here Come The Young Men, personally finding them both very emotional.

This album show's that The Courteeners are capable of pushing themselves and that they have no fear in trying new sounds but for me personally, they haven't got there just yet.
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on 5 February 2013
'The Courteeners' are like a good wine, they mature with age. This began to become apparent from their previous album 'Falcon' which toned down the edginess of 'St. Jude' and likewise 'Anna' continues along a similar theme. Some would argue that it is the band's daring audacity mixed with frontman, Liam Fray's deep vocals, that brings out their best, although having listened to their most recent release, I would ask those people to reconsider.

Despite being less overt with their riffs, 'The Courteeners' have still managed to create some killer anthems, testimony to their skill. The first single 'Lose Control' ironically oozed control as the listener can sense that the band feel completely comfortable with the sound they are creating. 'Are you in love with a notion?' and 'Van Der Graaff' also have something about them as the album begins with a bang. 'Push Yourself' can really only be described as a filler though, slightly tame and repetitive. However, they immediately redeem themselves with the next track because it feels as though there has been some kind of divine intervention in the making of 'When you want something you can't have'. It screams perfection and far exceeds the slower tracks such as 'Last of the Ladies' that featured on 'Falcon'. From there, 'Welcome to the Rave' reinvigourates the energy of old, while 'Money' reintroduces the rawness of a song by 'The Black Keys'. It culminates on the aesthetically pleasing 'Here Come The Young Men' which I don't feel would be misplaced on 'Snow Patrol's - Final Straw' and demonstrates how versatile the record is.

Prepare yourself for a richer sound with 'Anna' and you will not be disappointed!
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