Yours Truly, Angry Mob
First Appeared in The Music Box, March 2007, Volume 14, #3
Written by John Metzger
Considering the success of its debut Employment, the Kaiser Chiefs would be crazy to alter its approach. Not surprisingly, then, Yours Truly, Angry Mob, the bandís sophomore outing, largely follows a similar pattern of stuffing infectious melodies with sing-along choruses inside oversized, arena-ready arrangements. Throughout the set, the Kaiser Chiefs, with help from producer Stephen Street, once again casts Blurís Brit-pop back in time, smashing it into the mellifluent musings of The Smiths, the punk-ish theatricality of The Kinks, and the maximum-impact R&B of The Who. On Thank You Very Much, the ensemble perfectly captures the essence of the punk-driven side of early í80s new wave, while The Angry Mob skewers reactionary thought with a barroom chant that is designed specifically to cause an outbreak of drunken warbling. Elsewhere, Heat Dies Down, a song about waiting for a relationship to end, nabs its intro from the Rolling Stonesí Paint It Black before diving full-force into its anxious, stampeding groove. Likewise, as a head of steam is built on Highroyds, the music increasingly draws to mind The Whoís Live at Leeds-era performances of Tommy.
Beneath the surface of Yours Truly, Angry Mob, however, something is missing, and the problem stems entirely from the notion that the albumís individual components are better than the sum of its parts. Each track is an indisputable anthem, but when taken in full, the collectionís 12 songs, despite their superficial eclecticism, sound too much alike. In effect, Yours Truly, Angry Mob is made for an iPod player set on shuffle or for its contents to be picked apart and reassembled in piecemeal fashion on a myriad of self-made mix tapes. As long as the endeavor is approached with this perspective in mind, there are many pleasures to be had. Expecting anything further, however, is bound to leave behind a rather disappointing aftertaste.
Of Further Interest...
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2007 The Music Box