Fallen Empires [CD/DVD Combo] [Deluxe Edition]
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Top Customer Reviews
Those three aforementioned tracks-- "I'll Never Let Go", "Called Out In the Dark" and "In the End"-- are pretty much it for any real stylistic change. And even with those, take away the synths, and they sound just like earlier Snow Patrol work. And, frankly, it's not like they have never used spacey synths before, so even there, it's nothing shockingly new.
The rest of the album is right on par with the typical Snow Patrol material: A few quirky rockers, lots of big, orchestrated ballads with their almost trademark lack of any real bridge, and chorus sometimes not coming in until the very end when it is repeated over... and over.... again.... A formula that has appeared in every album over... and over.... again.... Also, a very simple tune like "Berlin" with wordless vocals, which reminds one much of artsy filler like "NYC" on the Songs for Polar Bears debut.
The stand-outs are the three earlier ones mentioned, as well as the moody ballad "This Isn't Everything You Are"-- awesome songwriting, here--, the intense build-up music of the title track and the cinematic "The Symphony", which are the kind of tracks that endeared me to SP to begin with.Read more ›
Regardless, what really works for "Fallen Empires" is the general lack of a dour, self-serious vibe that often plagues the work of decidedly "arty" rock artists at this approximate time of career. Gary Lightbody and company do not project any more than a necessary self-consciousness into the material, so nothing is cloying or overly sentimental. The music breathes.
Singles "Calling Out in the Dark," "This Isn't Everything You Are" and "New York" all have pep, rhythm, melody and sparkle with glistening choruses and considered, poetic lyrics that transform them into impressive, easy-to-listen-to pop/rock anthems.
They are not where the record's merit ends. "In the End" is profoundly stirring, with strong percussion from Jonny Quinn and husky guitars from Nathan Connolly propelling the pathos-fused melody and lyric onward. Lightbody's vocals are sincere and rife with passion. The nervy, jangly title track, with vocal modulations and rapid-fire drumming, works nearly as well.
The particularly electro-infused opener "I'll Never Let Go" is as intriguing and idiosyncratic as the more simply-produced anthem "Lifening," which breathes easily, simply presenting Lightbody's unique take on the meaning of life atop a highly evocative guitar.
"Berlin" also spots a unique worldbeat feel with a mixed-gender choral background, while "Those Distant Bells" sets the balmy, deeply felt tone its title implies.
"Fallen Empires" may lose Snow Patrol some fans, but it may gain them some as well. It is a slick, adventurous and artistically sincere set of solid tunes crafted by inarguably talented musicians.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Have thoroughly enjoyed this Album form front to back. Lightbody will sometimes drift from what his intended message may be, but he does find his way back to the concept at hand. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Stoned Goose
Highly recommend. While not all tracks were familiar, after hear a few times become so & all are very good tunes/Published 11 months ago by Linda R. Mathon
I had heard of this band before, but this old geezer from the seventies thought that with a name like that, they just had to be a rave band into coke, so I dumbly ignored them. Read morePublished 13 months ago by VITSOL
I guess everyone else loves this release. But it feels more like they've polished the rough edges - which I liked - away.
It's been played everywhere, and good for them. Read more
Some hits, some misses. Good songs, but gets a bit same-y after awhile. It's also a little over-produced for my taste. I think that's the culprit in their sound, actually. Read morePublished 19 months ago by kchrisfox