Keane – Strangeland. Album released May 4th (GR) 7th (UK) 8th (US)
Keane are set to release their forth studio album on May 7th in the UK, 8th in the US, but whats the album actually like. Well turns out RKUK Media have been listening to it and here’s our opinion of the album track by track.
You Are Young
Strangeland kicks off with You Are Young instantly breaking in to Toms powerful vocals. The song really begins the feel for the entire album, the return of that melodic sound we knew Keane for all along, but something new added in there too, dare we say Coldplay like at the end but great for it, the Viva La Vida style chanting at the end will get everyone singing Oh oh oh ooohhhhhh oh …. you’ll get it when you hear it.
Silenced By The Night
Next is the first single, Silenced By The Night. Now, I don’t know if its because I’ve heard this so much, but I personally never was, pardon the pun, keen on this song, maybe due to the consistent bellows in Toms voice from the Perfect Symmetry era, which I think we all want to forget. All in all it is a catchy tune, and like You Are Young before it, you will find yourself, atleast trying to, singing along to the end whooaaasss by Tom.
Disconnected is the first single in Germany, and has been a victim of sir Internet leak, but what a treat it is. Disconnected may have an absolutely wrong in the head music video, but its an awesome song, and really brings us back to the Under The Iron Sea days of Keane, which is not a bad thing at all. The old Keane we all loved is back!
Watch How You Go
Watch How You Go is one of those tear-jerkers, a song about leaving someone to live their life and, well, watch how they go. The songs not much at the start but once the chorus kicks in we’ve a song that really gets in you’re head. The harmonisation’s during “Behind now” are simply beautiful too.
Sovereign Light Cafe
Sovereign Life Cafe was one of the first Strangeland songs we heard back on the Perfect Symmetry tour when it was tried out live and we were all annoyed when it didn’t make it to Night Train, but its here now and deservedly on an album. This is one of those rare songs by Keane that actually cheers you up, and the songs so catchy you forget its simply a song about peoples lives around a Cafe, but it is more than that, love the lyrics “you can get a big house and a faster car, you can run away boy but you won’t get far”, so true. One of our instant and still album favourites.
On Your Own
When it comes to up tempo Keane songs none have really done that well, Put It Behind You was probably the worst song on UTIS, and sadly On Your Own is that one. Who knows, some may like it, I mean people liked Put It Behind You we’re not disputing that, but the song just whilst so fast and up tempo just feels empty for a Keane song.
The Starting Line
The Starting Line is an awesome track, probably feels that way after following On Your Own, but we’ve played it without On Your Own and it still sounds as awesome. The Starting Line is a real Keane ballad, something you really have begun to expect from a Keane album, and as usual great lyrics “Drag your heart up to the starting line, forget the ghosts that make you old before your time”, such a powerful statement, powerful song, great job Keane.
Black Rain in a word is absolutely beautiful. It takes a lot to call a song beautiful, but Black Rain really is. If its not the dreamy high pitch vocals from Tom, and Tim at the end, or the whirring synth that just makes this song literally the best song on the album, if I could do 6 out of 5 I would. Black Rain also features statements as usual, “if you’ve got love, you better hope that that’s enough”, does anything else need saying!
Kicking off with 80s style synths you’d think you were back in the old days, then we’re back. Neon River is one of the more personal songs on the album, but at the same time just an awesome track. We’re not particularly sure what the song is about, many mentions of locations on this and the entire album, but all in all this is another great song and we love the change in sound in the middle 8, could of been another song there!
Day With Come
Early in the album reviewing On The Road I said I didn’t like it due to up tempo, well, welcome back to up tempo Keane and it doesn’t work again, this sounds more like Put It Behind You than anything. The song is a bit better than On The Road but not much. Personally I ignore these two songs on the album.
In Your Own Time
(Note: this scored 3.5 on first listen) I love the sound of In Your Own Time and probably has the most addictive start of a song ever if that makes sense, everything just fits and I love that. The song is about someone trying to help someone along but in the end resulting in that person not been able to be helped in the end, but will be in time. This song is a grower, which not many Keane songs are, but after a few listens you’ll be playing it as mad as any other Keane classic.
Sea Fog is a term normally given to irregular weather conditions and in some terms thats what this song is about, but goes further than that. The song was apparently written whilst Tim stared in to the sky, and we can see that resemblance. The result an incredible song, and vocally Tom never fails to pump out those big notes!
Strangeland is a self titled album track which was given away early on Keane’s FaceBook Page. The song itself to us does feel a bit like a b-side, but actually after a few listens it does get in to you’re head which has to be good. We hope that the b-side sounding feel is not one for all the bonus tracks on the Deluxe Version.
Run With Me
They’ve done it, Keane have made a uptempo song thats actually good. With a poppy sound reminiscent of something you’d expect in the 90s but that certainly doesn’t make this a bad song, and we have to say these extra songs on the Deluxe version are completely worth it, we’re loving these. Run With Me is one of those songs with such a melodic rhythm you won’t be able to get it our of your head, from the “baby” in the chorus to the end.
Instantly and still is our number 1 favourite song on the album, I love it. It it usual Keane? No, but my god we love it. Such a cheeky song too, but the most catchiest Keane song I think there’s ever been and if you don’t have the chorus going through your head constantly weeks after hearing it you’re mad, this has to be our favourite by far.
It’s Not True
A beautiful melodic ballad to finish off the deluxe version of the album, at the start of the track it doesn’t seem like much, but give it time and you’ve got yourself one of those little Keane classics, love the harmonisation’s!
We love Strangeland, does it beat Hopes and Fears, well we’re old fashioned and think you can never beat the original, but it does stand right up there with Under The Iron Sea and some could argue better than Under The Iron Sea, so thats pretty much the middle ground. We heartedly recommend this album on release date, or if you haven’t already pre-order it, its a great album. We gave the album 4.5 out of 5, which literally could of been 5 out of 5 if they cut out On The Road and Day Will Come, but still an incredible album.
If you are pre-ordering the album bare in mind its released on a Bank Holiday in the UK so unless you get it digitally you won’t see it until the Americans do on the 8th May.
Check back to this review on the 7th May for the Deluxe Album Review.