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Four [Deluxe Edition]

4.1 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Bloc Party will release their first new album in four years, entitled FOUR, on August 21st via Frenchkiss Records. Produced by Alex Newport (The Mars Volta, AtThe Drive-In, Polysics), the album was recorded and mixed in New York City, and is the band's first full-length since 2008's acclaimed Intimacy. Along with this exciting news, the band have announced a string of European, U.S. and festival appearances following a two year absence from the stage, which will give fans the first opportunity to hear new material from their forthcoming album, as well as classic tracks from the band's ten year history. The overwhelming demand for the band has resulted in sold out shows across the globe. Bloc Party has released three full length albums, including their Mercury Prize nominated debut, Silent Alarm, helping to shape the sound of modern British guitar music.

Review

Sonically, ''Octopus'' takes the band back to the earliest days of ''Silent Alarm'', the group's 2005 debut. Despite the hectic guitars, lead singer Keke Okereke's strained voice, and the overall upbeat tempo, the track is pure rock 'n' roll, making a swift change from Bloc Party's last release, 2008's ''Intimacy'', which found the band in more electronic territory. --Billboard.com

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. So He Begins To Lie
  2. 3x3
  3. Octopus
  4. Real Talk
  5. Kettling
  6. Day Four
  7. Coliseum
  8. V.A.L.I.S.
  9. Team A
  10. Truth
  11. The Healing
  12. We Are Not Good People
  13. Mean (bonus track)
  14. Leaf Skeleton (bonus track)


Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 21, 2012)
  • Deluxe Edition edition
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Frenchkiss
  • ASIN: B008CJ4UUM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #129,016 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
On May 31st of this year, Bloc Party frontman Kele Okereke took to the internet. He began by apologizing for two not-very-funny jokes that had come in the months since Christmas 2010. One had suggested that he was booted from the band (he explained that he himself created the lie and it got out of control), and another suggested that an aging ex-Pearl Jam drummer had replaced mainstay Matt Tong. Neither of these hoax attempts were true - nor were they necessary. After the tour supporting their last album, 2008's Intimacy, Bloc Party found themselves at a creative standstill. Okereke thought the timing was right to "make a record that excites people in the clubs like M.I.A.'s XR2," as he put it. With a solo album and a dubstep EP behind him, Okereke explained that Bloc Party were indeed back together and had, in fact, just wrapped up recording their best record to date in Manhattan.

Bloc Party has a strong following comprised of two types of fans: there are fans that embrace their constant evolution and fans that want them to record Silent Alarm over and over and over again. After listening to Four - an album Okereke says got its title not because it was the band`s fourth album, but rather because it was a raw sound of four guys playing in room together - this record will both satisfy fans from both camps, and alienate some fans from both camps. Interested in always evolving, Bloc Party ditched both of their former producers, Jackknife Lee and Paul Epworth, and recruited producer Alex Newport of Mars Volta fame. Newport suggested that Bloc Party make a record the old-fashioned way: no ProTools, no layering, no over-synthesized effects. The outcome is a record that, at times, rocks harder than anything that the band has ever done.
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I love Bloc Party. I've been hooked since Silent Alarm and thought the way they successfully fused electronica and punk on 'Intimacy' was groundbreaking. 'Weekend in the City' was a pretty good album even if the B-sides were better than a lot of the official tracks. Regardless, they've always pushed themselves in new directions. Up 'til this album, anyway.

Frontman Kele Okereke has emphasized in interviews how 'Four' is just about four guys just jamming it out in the studio. He isn't lying: the production is minimal, the tracks go off in all sorts of directions (sometimes quite heavy) and there's nary a trace of their usual electronic influences to be found. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as a mediocre Bloc Party jam session is better than most band's best efforts, but by this post-punk foursome's standards they are phoning it in. The whole album smells of contractual obligation to me.

That's not to say there aren't good songs on here. Your mileage may vary (as evidenced by other reviews here) but for my money I find 'Real Talk', 'Kettling' and 'VALIS' quite enjoyable, while stuff like the opener 'So He Begins To Lie' feel derivative and forgettable. Mediocrity from Bloc Party? Say it ain't so!

There are tracks I dig on this album but I feel like the production (can it be called that? it literally sounds like they just turned on the soundboard and started playing) doesn't serve them well. Kele's got one of those unique voices that has to be handled carefully, and here it is too often buried in the mix or standing out above everything else, and not in a good way.

After several years full of rumors of the band's demise, I'm glad to see an album from them in any form.
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By Frozen Gimp on September 19, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is my least favorite Bloc Party album. Even after multiple listens, it hasn't grown on me all that much. My least favorite tunes are the ones in which they try a harder rock feel; it doesn't really suit them. My three favorite songs on this release are Octopus, Truth, and V.A.L.I.S.
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Format: MP3 Music
Bloc Party's recent release, FOUR, is aptly named: it's been four years since their last album, the band's personnel consists of four core members, and after all, this is their fourth studio album. It comes after a two-year self-imposed hiatus that found members of Bloc Party dabbling in other projects briefly (notably, lead singer Kele Okereke's electronic-dance record THE BOXER). After the band's 3rd album INTIMACY, the break seems to have rejuvenated the band's music and energy. With help from producer Alex Newport (who has helped with At the Drive-In/The Mars Volta, and City and Colour), FOUR has an energy and immediacy that hasn't been heard in Bloc Party since their debut.

Where more indie-rock groups have decidedly gone more electronic in recent times, Bloc Party's FOUR is raw in comparison. Even with the beginning of the album, the band has taken an approach that is messy and streamlined: "So He Begins to Lie" gives a false start before launching into the song proper. The track leads into "3x3," a song that picks up the pace even further. The album-promoting single "Octopus" serves as a highlight of the album, and it's a good representative sample for the rest of the album (guitar-centric, with the vocalist pleading with his trademark vocals). FOUR's first downtempo song, "Real Talk" is a great detour that veers in some unexpected places. The Philip K. Dick-inspired "V.A.L.I.S." is a decent enough song, but it's head-bobbing, hand-clapping beat is infectious. The lyrics here aren't nearly as revealing or heartbreaking as they were on previous albums (particularly A WEEKEND IN THE CITY), with much of the content here focusing on anarchy and paranoia.
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