An End Has A Start review by Editors

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  • Released: Jun 25, 2007
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 8.2 (52 votes)
Editors: An End Has A Start

Sound — 7
With the release of An End Has A Start, British indie rockers Editors are back with the follow-up to their much-heralded 2005 debut, The Back Room. Clearly happy with what turned out to be a successful musical combination (think a mash-up of U2, Joy Division, and Interpol with a touch of The Killers and a dash of The Smiths), Editors hold to the somewhat beaten path and play it safe with their sophomoric effort. Sparkling lead guitars, disco-drums, and rather subdued, gloomy vocals define the album just as they did two years ago, but understandably the band is comfortable with this.

This is not to say, however, that the album doesn't have it's moments -- far from it, in fact. Tracks such as Smokers Outside Hospital Doors and The Weight Of The World bring together shimmering, piercing lead guitar, simple yet striking drums, well-placed piano, and Tom Smith's dark vocals into hauntingly beautiful tracks that really make the album. Also key to the album is a stronger emphasis on the guitar work; instead of simply acting as just another layer to the song as was often the case on The Back Room, the guitar is the more than often the focus of the track, as is the case on songs like Escape The Nest and The Racing Rats.

While I am a fan of the piercing lead guitar work that I keep referring to, An End Has A Start teeters on the edge of too much. While the songs don't necessarily blend together, after listening to album for extended periods of time you may find that the guitar-work quickly loses it's appeal and becomes almost monotonous. But then again, why change a signature sound when it has proven successful in the past?

Lyrics — 8
Lyrically, An End Has A Start is superior to the Editors' debut, as is to be expected from a band with an album under their belt. Yes, the glum lyrics are still there but this time with added depth and feeling. The album largely focuses on the theme of love -- not love in the conventional way but rather lost love and the death of loved ones. Tracks such as Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors, and Bones tragically describes losing someone and never having the chance to start again and go back to the way it was. As Smith sings, In the end all you can hope for/Is the love you felt to equal the pain you've gone through. Equally touching are the slightly more optimistic tracks such as The Weight of the World in which Smith movingly sings Every little piece in your life/Will add up to one/Every little piece in your life/Will mean something to someone. The lyrics change very little throughout the album -- appropriately so as the heartrending yet beautiful nature of each song smoothly flows from track 1 to 10.

Overall Impression — 8
Editors have taken a very reserved, Coldplay-esque approach to An End Has A Start: they found what worked and stuck with it. As the saying goes, If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Rather than push their music further and experiment with new sounds, Editors relied heavily upon the tried-and-true approach to their debut album, delivering another beautiful, yet overdone album. If you were a fan of The Back Room, you are sure to love this album -- however if you are new to the band, don't be expected to be blown away. With the standard gloomy, British, indie sound, repetitive guitars, and less than exciting vocals, the album may be better suited as background music than a masterpiece. However, the gems of the album, Smokers Outside Hospital Doors, and The Weight Of The World help lift the listener past the monotony and truly define the album. So while An End Has A Start falls short of being truly great, it is a solid and powerful album. Editors have put together something that truly can only be described as tragically beautiful.

14 comments sorted by best / new / date

    The only track I can listen to without getting bored of it is Bones, which to me is like the next Munich. :| All in all a decent album, I suppose.
    I like the fact that you pick out the 1st single and the soon to be 2nd single and call them the gems of the album. If you'd actually listened to the album you'd probably be able to form a better opinion on the album, what tracks you like and don't like. Personally, I think it's abit of a push on from the last album..abit more epic and i'm loving the further use of the piano in some songs, it works really well. A good British band.
    Perhaps the 1st and soon-to-be 2nd singles were chosen because they ARE the gems of the album... usually you try to get the best songs on the radio, no?
    madefortvmovie wrote: Perhaps the 1st and soon-to-be 2nd singles were chosen because they ARE the gems of the album... usually you try to get the best songs on the radio, no?
    No not generally. Its down to what tracks the record label percieve to be audience friendly, to draw in more people to buy the album. I tend to find the better tracks on albums are the ones that aren't released because they are the one's that stray from the formula.
    ^good point still, i think that their being singles should have little to do with whether or not they are perceived to be the best tracks.
    indeed!!! RACING RATS> ALL! well said that is an anthem,but yet every song is brilliant on this album! now im not keen on indy but this caught me!
    Paul Lambeth
    What does "Escape The Nest" remind me of :\ "There's life in us yet, dear" sounds just like another song by someone else. Anyhoo. Pretty good album, but repetitive in a way, as I can't listen to the whole album at once. Great atmospherics though.
    i actually love both of thier albums, they are so different to other bands out at the moment. i dont think its repetitive at the least, i just chuck the cd on, play sum 360 and it just wooshes by.
    I liked the first album but i got tired of it in a few days, but this cd is just brilliant, it's much stronger lyrically, and the piano gives it a post-punk coldplay feel, I like the review, and you hit on a lot of points I'd put out, like the repetitive effect they use on the guitar, but other than that I'd give it a 9, I love this album
    this album is great i've had it since it came out (about 2 and half months) and the songs have already racked up atleast 60 plays on my mp3 player the most being AN END HAS A START with 97 plays... this album is just amazing... next year at the festivals they are gonnna blow everyone away. No question about it!
    personally i think this album is a hell of a lot better than their first. i dont really think its the same at all! its a lot more epic, involving better use of instruments (including piano). one track which i think would do really badly as a single, but i think is the stand out track for me, is well worn hand. i listen to it and its just so good. so different to anything else theyve done. 10 out of 10 from me.
    A decent album, not quite as good as the first, but I like the sound of the Editors as they have there own unique sound. And you can't say that about many bands this day and age!!! I think Spiders is a great track, great use of vocals, I think this should have been a single! All in all this is an album you should have in your collection.
    once again jacknife lee turns a band from indie to stadium, but somehow does it really well! i liked this album, but only about half the songs. i only liked about half the songs on the back room too, so i could just combine them. i'd really like to see them live. does tom still use the tele custom, or does he always use the es-335?