Sound — 9
Not so long ago it seemed that Bloc Party were all but over, with the band even searching for another singer, it seemed the band would never record together again. With difficult third album "Intimacy", a radical departure from their earlier, aggressive guitar sound, it was clear that lead singer and songwriter Kele Okereke had a different idea to the rest of the band of where they were headed, showcased in his solo venture "The Boxer". After the success of his first solo album and the remainder of the band beginning their own projects it seemed that Bloc Party would never record together again. Forth albums are tricky as it is without the weight of expectation surrounding "Four". "Franz Ferdinand", "The Kooks" and "Razorlight" are yet to make theirs. Many fans feeling that they are owed a return to form after the mixed reviewed "Intimacy". "Four" however is the sound of a band rediscovering the sound that made them so unique on their first album "Silent Alarm". The screeching guitar battles between Okereke and Russell Lissack, and the welcomed return of Matt Tong's unique drumming style. Between tracks you can here snippets of the band interacting in the studio which adds a nice feeling that this wont be the last "Bloc Party" album you will listen to. This album sounds like Bloc Party at their best, while not every track is amazing, it feels like their most complete album since "Silent Alarm". This album must be listened to as a whole.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics are typical of Kele Okereke's song writing. He tends write about themes that are universal however the biggest development on this album is the development of Kele's voice. Perhaps he had to go it alone to realise the full potential of his voice but he showcases it throughout "Four".
Overall Impression — 8
I love this album and as I said it must be listened to as whole to truly appreciate it. The that particularly stand out are: 1. "So He Begins To Lie" 3. "Octopus" 4. "Real Talk" 5. "Kettling" 6. "Day Four" 8. "V.A.L.I.S." "Four" isn't another "Silent Alarm", it's also not Bloc Party's best effort. It's the sound of a band coming out of a tough stage in their career and rediscovering the fun of making music together, and it sounds fantastic.