Oh boo hoo, Kaiser Chiefs may have thus far made you fork out £20+ with all releases around The Future Is Medieval. At the end of the day, this review is about the music, the package etc. NOT writing a vendetta against the band and management. Sure, you might be annoyed, but share it somewhere else. This is about the physical release.
My only warning on that front is that, if you have downloaded 10 or 20 songs from their website, it might be wise to tell you that there is only one new track here not seen on that selection. Or anything up to 9 new ones, had you not done the 'make your own album' dealio. That track, Kinda Girl You Are, is one of the best tracks on this excellent selection.
Elsewhere, it's a great collection of songs; Little Shocks is the obvious single off the album, and Long Way From Celebrating is the next obvious choice. Out Of Focus displays a, well, more focused and psycadelic side to the Kaisers, as does many of the drum fills in the selections; Starts With Nothing has a outro that The Beatles or The Who would be proud of (Cousin In The Bronx, not featured on the physical release, cuts a similar tune). Other highlights include Dead Or In Serious Trouble, which would've probably been better suited as the album closer, the 80's pop of Heard It Break, and the wildly ambitious Man On Mars.
It's very hard to listen to if you had already created 10 songs and got used to your own tracklisting (as I have) and I do feel that I prefer my own version, but this is what you make of it. It seems a crime that Problem Solved isn't on here, as with I Dare You, but that's up to them. Is it an album? Now it is, but I feel you still need to judge it not on on this release, but on your own selections too. This release is probably equal to their best work, and probably the most adventurous they've gone yet.
The retail version has some great tracks on, for sure. But in my opinion they have decided to leave some of the strongest tracks off the retail version of the album (problem solved, saying something, my place is here, back in december and can't mind my own business). A shame, if they replaced some of the weaker, very dodgy '80's' sounding tracks (heard it break, out of focus et al) with these more instant - catchier tracks, it could have been killer.
I have loved the Kaiser Chiefs from the very first time I heard them, long before they became public property, & they have been away for far too long! This is a good come-back album, unmistakably Kaiser Chiefs, & it's good to see that they haven't moved away from their style. Welcome back boys!
After all the fuss of make your own Kaiser Chiefs album in which you picked 10 songs from 20 and you had your very own album, now comes the real release, which has sensibly been whittled down to 13 tracks, the best 13? Well not everyone is gonna agree on that. The one thing that can be said is that the Kaiser Chiefs are still as catchy as ever and still know how to laden a song with a few hooks.
Beginning with lead single "Little Shocks" which has a great funky groove beat running through it and even surprises us with a guitar solo near the end, it's the kinda song The kaiser Chiefs do so well. Second song "Things Change" even sounds a bit like David Bowies "Fame" with some infectious beats. One of the stand out tracks is "Coming Up For air" which has a great chorus and recalls memories of "You can Have It All" from debut album "Employment". The track "Long Way From Celebrating" has a great bass line running through it as it changes from mid tempo to fast and back to mid again.
"Starts With Nothing" has a nice piano sound and a bit of rhythm that carries the song to a big middle section. "Out of Focus" has an electronic feel to it and has some big sounding beats. "Child of the Jago" has the feel of a lazy summers day about it. "Heard it Break" sounds like it's straight out of the 1980's with it's electronic synthesizer sound, it even has elements of Kraftwerk or The Human league about it! Album closer "If You Will Have Me" which is sung by Drummer and chief songwriter Nick Hodgson finishes the album on a quiet note as he sings quietly over an acoustic guitar.
With "The Future Is Medieval" the Kaiser Chiefs have shown they still know how to deliver a catchy tune and have some fun and while some people might not be happy that one of the other songs that they liked or picked wasn't included on the final album they can't complain too much as the 13 songs that did certainly catch the spirit of what the Kaiser Chiefs are all about.
Have always loved this band, and 'Employment' was the first proper album i bought. I have felt that bands like the Arctic Monkeys have lost their touch.. But the Kaiser Chiefs once again prove that they still have the talent to carry on. At Glastonbury, they had the crowd all excited and did not disappoint! This album does not either..!
Unlike the review at 1 star, i dont care about how much i have to spend, i have this CD, itunes copy, and the one off their website... Their music is worth it to drown out the crap thats in the charts right now!!