Music You Don't Know You Like Yet
2009-02-04Known early on as the "band with no guitars," on this their third effort, guitars are heavily scattered throughout as Keane seeks to maximize their sound, even going so far as to use horns and strings in a few cases. From a "Pop" standpoint, Keane pulls out all the stops on their opening four tracks. On the first, "Spiraling," the band chronicles a life out of control - presumably lead vocalist Tom Chaplin's. The second, "The Lovers are Losing," is equally well done but offers a rather depressing take on love and life. On the fourth, "You Haven't Told Me Anything," Keane showcases guitars unlike anything we've probably heard from them before. Another song worth mentioning, is the synth laced "Again and Again," - a catchy track about the difficulties one faces in relationships that don't quite live up to our expectations. Perhaps the best sounding song here is the title track, "Perfect Symmetry" a political and theological rant of sorts that suggests: "This life is lived in perfect symmetry / What I do, that will be done to me." After three albums, I think it's safe to say that Keane has mastered the art of writing catchy pop songs that prove listenable. If there is one criticism here, it's that Keane still hasn't found a way to write a group of songs that don't all gravitate to the same overall sound and feel. Aside from the slower and down tempo tracks, many of the songs sound similar and are hard to differentiate. While this is a really good effort, and arguably their best, I can't help but wonder if something better is yet to come. ~Reviewed by Jeff Bouma
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