The Enemy - Streets in the Sky Album Review
Four years ago, The Enemy headlined 6 nights at the London Astoria. The trio's residency was a massive thing at the time; having been dubbed the next big thing and having number 1 album, 'We'll Live And Die In These Towns', The Enemy had the world at their Coventry feet. There's always a danger in quick success and The Enemy were a victim that. Their second album was not as well accepted. 'Music For The People' was just that, well it was meant it be in it's political slurs about a failing democracy, getting out the city and the nation's girls all working on checkouts. Though all the ranting sounds good on paper, some of the ideas proved too big and it was nowhere near as well executed as it could've been. They didn't need to come with a political drive to grab attention because everyone was still very much focused on them.
But as 2012 rolled up, hello The Enemy and welcome 'Streets in the Sky', a roaring album of big riffs and the bigger ideas condensed into rounded portions with the potential of leaving an impression. Fans of The Enemy will have a lot of love for this record. Old fans might rekindle their love and non-fans may like the sparsely pop-like choruses and their repetition. First single, 'Gimme A Sign', opens the album in a brash, 'we're back' manner and there's no stopping Tom Clarke and the boys. All twelve tracks scream this. Though, if the song were released five years ago, it would have played a part in securing their Astoria residency.
It feels like The Enemy are musically content throughout 'Streets in the Sky'. Although the record still has politics involved, it's tamed and metaphorically discussed this time around, helping you to feel less taken aback and wary. This album attempts to entice you in at the beginning of every track, with an ambitiously loud intro and the re-occurring words of the raging chorus like in 'Come In To My World', 'Saturday' and 'Turn It On'. Influences such as The Clash, The Undertones and, to an extent, The Ramones glisten in the shade of the contributions. '2 Kids' has the visible strums of an acoustic guitar. Different from the rest, it would have fitted better with their first record, but it's a joyous reminder of 2007.
The Enemy have found themselves again; a rightful progression of their first two albums. However, in all the heady drive of the record, on a first listen it's very easy for it all to fuse into one clump of noise. 'Streets in the Sky' is very dependent on these riffs, an easy option taken by the three-piece. If they had created some more stripped back songs and not been overtaken by the desire to have to prove themselves once again, this could have been a much more sophisticated comeback.
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