Thursday, July 04, 2013

Editors: "The Weight of Your Love" (album review)

Over most of their career, Editors have been known for their dark, angular (and Anglo) rock.  However, they took a big electronic U-turn on their last record, In This Light & On This Evening.  So which direction do they go in for their new studio album The Weight of Your Love?  Let's examine.

The album opens strong with "The Weight", a track that emulates the cinematic sprawl of An End Has A Start.  The vibe is continued on the methodical and imposing "Sugar".

The prevailing impression of the album, though, is one of listlessness.  "Two Hearted Spider" serves as a microcosm for the record, relying almost completely on mood to impact the listener, with little musical punch.  Despite emotionally-charged lyrics, the string-laden "Nothing" is nearly passionless.

The strong, forceful vocals of Tom Smith are always key element of an Editors song.  The trademark sound is present throughout the new album as well.  There are a few exceptions.  On "A Ton of Love" he sounds like Billy Idol singing above an arrangement that's half New Order and half The Cult.  The results are actually much better than one would expect given that description.  The weak Brett Anderson-esque falsetto on "What Is This Thing Called Love" does not fair as well.

Aside from "A Ton of Love", we do get some better up-tempo moments in the form of the surprisingly twangy "The Phone Book", and the loose bouncy hook-filled "Formaldehyde".

Editors are still a long way removed from the days when they blew Interpol away in the Joy Division-inspired rock category, but The Weight of Your Love is a baby-step closer to what they've been known for.  Now they just need to take a daring leap backwards to move forward.

Best tracks: "Formaldehyde", "A Ton of Love"

Track listing for The Weight of Your Love:
  • The Weight
  • Sugar
  • A Ton of Love
  • What Is This Thing Called Love
  • Honestly
  • Nothing
  • Formaldehyde
  • Hyena
  • Two Hearted Spider
  • The Phone Book
  • Bird of Prey

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