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List price: £11.99|
Our price: £3.96
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Average customer rating:
4.04 out of 5
Media: Audio CD|
ISBN/ASIN : B0003V16WM
Manufacturer : Sony Music UK|
Release data : 01 November, 2004
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A selection of product reviews
A welcome return to form!!
I'll keep this relatively short (shorter than usual anyway): Firstly, I think all of the albums by The Manics are excellent, apart from Generation Terrorists and Know Your Enemy, which despite both having many great songs on, go on far too long and roughly a quarter of both albums is utterly awful. So that said, this is as good as anything they've done in the past.
I think To Repel Ghosts and Fragments are as haunting and excellent as anything on this album. The best songs in my opinion apart from these are 1985, The Love Of Richard Nixon, Empty Souls, A Song For Departure (even though it sounds similar to Empty Souls), Solitude Sometimes Is and Cardiff Afterlife (even though it's quality won't hit you straight away). 1985, Empty Souls, To Repel Ghosts and Fragments are probably the 4 equal best songs, if I had to choose. There are no weak songs on this album, even though Emily, Glasnost, and I Live To Fall Asleep aren't as good as the best songs on it. Always/Never is a grower, so overall this is excellent, and a must have for fans of proper music, even if it's their most 'poppy' album to date, and unlike their usual stuff.
'God is dead!' cries James Dean Bradfield on 1985. Maybe so, but The Manic Street Preachers certainly aren't.
A Return to Form
Lifeblood is a return to form. It's better than "Everything Must Go", and equals "The Holy Bible" in its musical brilliance. The lyrics may be less obvious and more delicate than before, but this shows maturity that matches the music. The opening track "1985" is one of the best songs they've ever written. "Empty Souls" is another brilliant song, and so is the next, "A Song for Departure". In fact there are absolutely no weak songs on this album. The only songs that could be considered average would be the single "The Love of Richard Nixon" and "Emily" - and they aren't really bad songs, just not up to the very high standard of the other tracks.
If you liked "Everything Must Go", and "This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours", then you will almost certainly enjoy this album. If however you're still waiting for a Holy Bible rehash then you might be disappointed. This is an album of pop songs, not heavy rock songs. Saying that, the meaning of pop has somewhat been changed to the point where it is often thought to mean 'throwaway' - this album certainly is not. It's pop music with meaning to match melody. My favourite album of 2004.
Full of life..maybe..but a Manics return with shed blood!!!
In hearing "The Love of Richard Nixon", it had been expectant that we were drawn to hear uninspiring tunes from the Manics similar to the messed and flawed "Know Your Enemy". In fact it's sheer brilliance from the Blackwood's finest trio. It kinds of throws away the tension, confusion and experimentation from their previous album starting with a nice mellowing clean slate. The majority of its slow tracks, it hooks to your feel-good senses desperately often unrequited with their earlier work, in every way possible it is whispering to you breathlessly to say this album is a modern-art classic.
Kicking with a good opening track, "1985" shows light anthem rock with soothing melodic rhythms similar to "A Design for Life", clearly reminding you how they matured as a band to a softer direction in rock. "Empty Souls", "Song for Departure", and "Live to Fall Asleep" really highlights that the Manics can produce nice pop-rock with the digging of 1987-era U2 in "To Repel Ghosts" to New-Orderish feel in "Fragments" suiting for all tastes.
The album adds new blends of nice upbeat, harmonious electro-piano melange topped with classic vocals of James Dean Bradfield putting them on a new inspiring level although not clearly as profoundly ingenious with their dark album "The Holy Bible" but this is an album for mature Manic fans. Go buy and listen as it proves the Manics fulfil to all expectations.