The Rapture – Pieces Of The People We Love (2006): Review

rapture

Produced by Ewan Pearson, Paul Epworth, Danger Mouse
Label – Vertigo

3 years since The Rapture’s debut (“Echoes”) and a time when dance/punk seemed to be a credible resurgent musical art form. The brilliant “House Of Jealous Lovers” along with the relative excitement of the new breed of acts such as Radio 4, Fischerspooner, and VHS or Beta, all using jerky Gang Of Four rhythms and Clash attitude marked what may have led to a major revival. It didn’t happen, few of the acts survived, and the prevalence for the continuous diet of indie/folk, alt.country and some of the quirky, soul searching wimp rock you’ll find on the home page of Pitchfork media makes The Rapture’s new album seem oddly out of place. The fact that dance music in whatever form will be better received in UK makes sense, and The Rapture have enjoyed greater chart success and reviews in the UK than their homeland. But is “Pieces Of The People We Love” 2 years too late?

There is of course white hot energy coursing through every sinew of “Pieces Of The People We Love”. The Rapture have a powerful ability to create an addictive groove, and the album contains an abundance, but great grooves don’t always make memorable songs, and although manifests as something far more satisfying than their debut, there is still an impression that your life will be none the worst for grabbing the singles and leaving the rest confined to the store shelves.

rapture

The lead off single “Get Myself Into It” is perfect example of where The Rapture have the ability to use their signature clunky rhythms and itchy guitars to create something both dance worthy and catchy, and has chart assault written all over it. Other highlights include the tight funk jam, and simple insistence of “Don Gon Do It”, and the slightly barking, but still fun “Whoo! Alright”. Producers Ewan Pearson and Paul Epworth have cleaned up the shambolic sounds of the debut which at least makes for a more coherent sound than “Echoes”.

Where the rest badly fails is in firstly bringing in Dangermouse to take away the clanging rhythms and add wishy washy electronica to “Calling Me” and the title track. If a band struggle for strong songs but can create strong rhythms, why take those rhythms out and add machines? It makes no logical sense at all. In addition, unless one has capability for extreme vocal patience, Luke Jenner’s vocals still sound pretty awful, like a man with his balls in a lightly greased sandwich toaster attempting his best Robert Smith impression. The whining really detracts one from the music and this problem has been prevalent with every release.

If one can draw a positive, it’s better than their debut. But who are we trying to kid? “Pieces Of The People We Love” is still pretty tiresome, meaningless whining and uninventive mutant dance punk.

5/10

Track Listing
1.”Don Gon Do It”
2.”Pieces of the People We Love”
3.”Get Myself Into It”
4.”First Gear”
5.”The Devil”
6.”Whoo! Alright-Yeah…Uh Huh”
7.”Calling Me”
8.”Down for So Long”
9.”The Sound”
10.”Live in Sunshine”

Get Myself Into It

Whoo! Alright – Yeah…Uh Huh”

Pieces Of The People We Love

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