Bloc Party, slightly re-organised, is back with Hymns – their fifth album. After a hiatus starting in 2013, frontman Kele Okereke and guitarist Russell Lissack remain, together with Justin Harris and Louise Bartle (respectively the new bassist & drummer). It’s been four years since their last, more guitar-driven, album: Four.
Their indie-electronic soundscapes are big, bold, and intimate all at the same time. Hymns might not be familiar, classic Bloc Party, but it still dances the line between dance music and indie rock. This time with a healthy injection of religious imagery (as the title probably gives away). The record seems very atmospheric and ethereal, while lyrically, it sounds like a spiritual shrine to whatever you’d want it to be. It’s not wholly religious, but could be painting a picture of everyday spiritual experiences in romantic love, music, alcohol, and the thrills of modern life.
Hymns is a beautiful collection of delicate melodies and precious words. It’s crisp, clear-cut, emotional, and confessional. But it’s also energetic, lively, and spiritually exciting. And so far, looks like it might quickly and firmly become my favourite Bloc Party release.
Get Bloc Party‘s upcoming album Hymns by pre-ordering the album on iTunes or the CD via loot.co.za. Oddly, loot.co.za has the Deluxe Edition listed for cheaper than normal. The Deluxe Edition is also on iTunes. The album officially releases on 29 January 2016.