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4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Vinyl|Change
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on April 4, 2009
Don't worry. It's Gomez. At this stage of the game, you kinda know that they're good. And if you like what they've done before, you're probably going to like this, too. If reviews and fan comments are to be believed, people seem to be split into pre-and-post In Our Gun categories. While I can understand this notion, I became a fan during the In Our Gun era, and consequently, have loved everything before and since. The older stuff is revelatory if you've never heard it before, and the new stuff takes a self-assured step in another, less defined direction; a step I would not discount in the least. Some of the greatest glories with this band have come from experimentation and throwing everything against the pop music wall and seeing what sticks. To me, it all sticks, and even the misses are worth the price of admission. This album strikes me as more of a fusion of sounds from the early years and the best of the sonic efforts from the last album, How We Operate. But in the end, what they've come up with is another sure step into what can only be described as Gomez. And, for my ear, that works perfectly.
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on April 4, 2009
I have been a major Gomez fan since hearing Bring It On. They are a British band that makes Mercury Prize winning music with innovation and intelligence. They can make you even more cool just by putting on a Gomez cd when friends are over. Their style is hip earthy eclectic group chemistry. They all write songs and three sing vocals. Any of them can carry a song on their own but the sound of their voice combos are even more fun. My personal favorite is Ben Ottewel, heard on their last cd's song How We Operate.

When I heard Airstream Driver the first time on the radio my antenna went up. I knew it was good music but didn't realize it was Gomez. When the dj said who the band was and a new cd was being released in a few weeks I started counting down the time. On High Tide they continue their inclusion of a broad assortment of styles, percussion and instruments. Among those used here are cello, congas, viola, bass harmonica, nut salad and gong and what is referred to as the Stomach of Ben (which was fun to try to single out). From the first song Mix to Airstream Driver through to Sunset Gates there were no misses. I had a rough week at work but keeping High Tide on constant replay lifted me through it.

What a treat to find out they included a free dvd. "Here Comes the Breeze: Gomez in Chicago." Seriously, how cool is that? I haven't been able to see them in concert, much disappointment, so this was very much appreciated.

If you're already a Gomez fan...this is a worthy addition to the Gomez library. If you've heard Airstream Driver recently and liked it, I am certain you will be glad you bought this cd.
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on April 9, 2009
Wow...thank you Gomez. As much as I enjoyed INDIVIDUAL SONGS on How We Operate(in particular, the title track and Hamoa Beach)I was a little concerned that the guys had maybe started going down the watered down, try-to-please-the-radio-format syndrome(aka Dave Mathews Disease)that a lot of other groups have gotten ill from in the past. Thankfully, I can proudly say, NO. I am so proud of these guys and this record. This is their best album since Bring It On and their is not a single clunker on this album. Wonderfully produced, catchy hooks, wonderful vocals...this is the album Bring It On fans have been waiting for. NOW, I am biased since Liquid Skin is personally the only album that Gomez has ever made that really didn't register with me and even that album stands up against most band's best efforts in my estimation.Nevertheless, this album helps 2009 start with a bang for me personally and I can't imagine a Gomez fan not liking this album. Now, maybe if you are some slave to emo and droning radio formats, then maybe you should go buy the flavor of the week band and let real music be enjoyed by real music fans.A+ album
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on April 2, 2009
Gomez has more collective talent and musicianship than any of their more successful peers from the 90s Brit band invasion. All things considered, the A-list of highly regarded Brit bands of that era such as Oasis, Radiohead, the Verve and Portishead have yet to produce a body of work that is as compelling and consistently high in quality as Gomez. Four years after being dropped by Virgin Records for lack of sales and thirteen years after forming as a band, Gomez remains under nearly everyone's radar, except for a growing cult of fans who've attended their high energy live shows.

"A New Tide" is the musical equal of any of Gomez's earlier releases. They've polished their world weary and culturally literate hook laden songs driven by their muscular three guitar sound with a sheen of professionalism...but not to a fault. Gomez is equally at home playing in an unplugged accoustic setting as they are wired to a wall of amplifiers. There are multiple songwriters and three vocalists each talented enough to front their own band. It's tempting for fans to single out Tom Grey's evocative voice as Gomez's vocalist and front man, but Gomez would rather be an anonymous band without a front man, than relinquish the shared duties of singing and songwritting.

"A New Tide" finds Gomez sticking to it's guns and refusing to abandon it's trademark rootsy soulful approach to pander to the latest gimmicks and trends of mainstream pop. And it's refreshing to see a band with enough self awareness to avoid reinventing themselves into something they are not, for the sake of financial success. The reason why Gomez has produced six albums with only almost no throwaway filler is they've been brutally honest in their self assessment of their own collective strengths and limitations as a band.

Three years ago AMG wrote "(Gomez).. has so gradually come into its own via a stubborn insistence on sticking to its own principles, has grown immeasurably and become a unit of utter confidence and consistent vision that insists on excellence and will settle for nothing." This is the sound of a band sitting around facing one another and concentrating on writing and executing songs that stand the test of time, using multiple songwriters of equal gift and merit.

If Gomez fails to acheive widspread commerical success in it's own time, at some point perhaps 5,15 or 25 years in the future, the amazing musical legacy of Gomez will come to light. And if I'm not around to say "I told you so," when Gomez finally achieves noteriety, I'm sure a few million posuers will be crawling out of the woodwork to tell anyone within earshot, they've been on to the talents of Gomez since 1998's "Bring It On."

BEST SONGS: If You Ask Nicely, Little Pieces, Airstream Driver
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on February 25, 2011
I do really like this album. I rank it in the upper middle out of all the Gomez albums, and I listen to it frequently. If you are at all a Gomez fan, you should have no trouble appreciating A New Tide.

But for this release, save some money and go with CD or download. Skip vinyl. I'm a big fan of vinyl and that is almost always my preference. I was very excited to spin Airstream Driver and listen to the awesome jam session come alive on my turntable. I was very disappointed. On this album it sounds like they just did a flattened transfer of the CD master to the vinyl release. Dynamic range is low, it's just a lifeless recording. Completely defeats the purpose of going through the ritual of listening to an album on a turntable.
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I'll keep it short, but this album is by *far* their best since the first two. Makes you forget the misguided efforts of Split the Difference and the weaker tracks on the last album. I have been really surprised at much I have enjoyed this album. Key tracks: the one-two of Bone Tired-Airstream Driver.
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on May 23, 2009
This is a brilliant album, people, by one of the great bands of the last decade and possibly beyond. The trick is, just like with all Gomez offerings, you really have to listen to it several times in multiple contexts to truly appreciate it. They are so simple on the surface, just a bunch of talented musicians writing and playing often intensely personal songs with catchy beats and creative arrangements. But on many songs there is another layer below, reminiscent of the best work of John Lennon or Neil Young, that somehow manages to combine a jaded outlook with a sense that things can always change for the better. On this record, the best example of this is Ian Ball's Win Park Slope, which on one level is a wistful piece about a career that could have been different if not for critics obsessed with winning prizes and whatever else. But on another it's a nice statement that the band intends to keep creating its music regardless of the noise. This is my favorite track, but all songs, from 1-11, have merit, with Ben Ottewell's Natural Reaction and Little Pieces and Tom Gray's If I Asked You Nicely (the only track that he leads) and of course Ball's Airstream Driver, a classic radio song (of all their great songs will this finally be their hit!), leading the way.
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on March 31, 2009
This has been an eagerly awaited follow up to How We Operate. A New Tide is a return to some of the harder edge of Bring It On. The leadoff single, Airstream Driver, with its pop undertones belies a gritter performance on many of the other album's tracks. My early favorite on the album, Little Pieces, nicely showcases Ben Ottwell, as do several other of his featured songs.
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on September 3, 2011
Deserves more recogition than it has. I understand the How We Operate, their previous, was a hit success. This too, is a solid, enjoyable album, with songs that always make me want to get up and move. Songs that you'll find yourself singing along too, annoying all the people around you. Generally upbeat, and catchy.
My favorite song on here is Lost Track. I really enjoyable the instrumental build of it. Little Pieces is fantastic too, and probably the hit track of the album.
Viva Gomez.
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Fans of Gomez' non-conformist sound and maverick ethos will probably find plenty to like in this, their sixth studio album. I don't mean that this collection sounds like the discs that made them famous. Never a band to rest on their laurels, this album signals a possible turn in their sound that reflects the fact that, eleven years after their first CD, they're more mature, and so are we in the audience.

After making their name with two Britpop albums that drew heavily on Chicago blues, Gomez lapsed into two discs of silliness that tarred them with the label "experimental," before returning in 2006 with How We Operate, which added folk and jazz to their distinctive sound. This album adds a heavy dose of '90s American indie rock, with all the acoustic jangle and trance-inducing reverberation that implies.

At first listen, my response to this album was to shrug. Some of the tracks are highly repetitive and pass under the listener's consciousness without leaving a mark. Songs like "Lost Track" and "Natural Reaction" are so hypnotic that they completely failed to penetrate my brain. A few tracks on this album could charitably be described as merely average. I may be biased, though: no indie rock fan, me.

But some songs buoy the rest up. After my initial reaction, I realized that "Mix," "If I Ask You Nicely," "Airstream Driver," and "Very Strange" are pretty good. The blend of acoustic and electric instruments is handled with aplomb, and the guest musicians let songs stretch to create a broad tenor. While individual elements may fall short, the whole collection is a cut above most work coming out of the studios today.

Those seeking a museum piece of how Gomez sounded in 1998 will be disappointed. Listeners with no musical sense of adventure may find this CD confusing. And, on the whole, this album is not a masterpiece. But it is listenable, thought-provoking, smart rock for those of us who feel we've been left behind by major label music these days. If you like intelligent, dynamic rock music without the artificial sheen of pop, you'll enjoy this collection.
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