The Strokes return with their fifth studio album Angles
The Strokes are back from hibernation after a 5 year sabbatical with their fourth studio album Angles. This is their first album since 2006´s release of First Impressions of Earth. "Under Cover of Darkness," the first single off the album, has been a success so far with Strokes fans as it was performed recently on "Saturday Night Live" March 5, 2011. Produced by Joe Chiccarelli, Angles, for those who didn't download the album, shows the genius of the Strokes. Of course it's not on the level of their groundbreaking album Is This It?, but it's excellent nonetheless. There are some songs that aren't quite successful yet nevertheless retain intensity and emotion. In "Life is Simple in the Moonlight," lead singer Julian Casablancas supplies some great vocals in this final track. Along with Brazilian bossa nova chords, it's a great way to close out an album with elegance and flair.
The first track "Machu Picchu" starts out sounding like Men At Work's "Down Under," and ends with Michael Jackson's "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" melody, adding some nifty guitar riffs to open the new album.
"You're so Right" is a very distant track, with Casablancas' robot-like vocals. The song is heavily influenced by R.E.M.
The guitar work on "Taken for a Fool" is simply riveting and makes up for Casablancas' not so smooth vocals in this one.
On the track "Two Kinds of Happiness," soaring guitars empower the whole song, easily making it the best song on the album. The drums during the chorus are the cherry on top, as it makes you want to listen to the song over and over again.
With Casablancas distancing himself by his own choice, (in an attempt for the rest of the Stokes to write and collaborate) the Strokes have worked through their personal battles for the sake of the group's success. Though the previous songs and bass lines were written largely by Casablancas, his efforts worked, as the other members of the band have written their own songs. Although the album has its faults, its quality is exceptional.
In spite of news that the band did not take pleasure in recording the album, the outcome was truly refreshing to hear.
Yes, the Strokes are back, albeit not with the same stroke of genius from back in 2006 when nominated for best rock band, but still with fervor and a hunger for more. They are currently working on a fifth studio album, so hibernation will have to wait another year or so. The band will embark on a worldwide tour promoting the album this year, as well as gracing the stage at this years' Coachella.