For video games enthusiasts of a certain generation, Hadouken! have the coolest band name possible. Beyond their name inspiration, they have previously acquired media support from the likes of Zane Lowe and Mike Skinner, while touring partners include Example and Does It Offend You, Yeah? This record will be supported by a UK tour from mid-April.
The rise of the dance-indie crossover in recent years has been given various labels - nu-rave and indietronica to name but two - with true mainstream success thus far eluding this quintet. Whilst the sound may not fit in with daytime airplay fashion, opener 'The Vortex' hits the spot that Muse had aimed for on 'The 2nd Law'. Thumping beats and erratic synths energise the track and the following 'Levitate' ramps up the euphoric mood further. Fans of the most recent FIFA game will already be familiar with 'Bliss Out', which seamlessly glides between grimy verses and an expansive, arms-in-the-air chorus. Just as the record veers toward cruise control, 'Parasite' provides a timely change in pace and moves toward dub-step, but after this we return to the status quo. This isn't completely a bad thing, but from this point tracks blend into one another and struggle to establish their own merits. One track that does break from the crowd is 'Stop Time', which benefits from a slightly reduced pace whilst being swamped in synths, while 'The Comedown' holds similarities to some of Linkin Park's work when they lean toward hip-hop. Ultimately, what begins as an exciting album gets lost in itself, suffering from a lack of variety and, at 50 minutes, a running time that outstays its welcome.
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