Follow Us on Twitter

Idlewild - Make Another World

Idlewild, Make Another World

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

FOR their sixth studio album, Idlewild have returned to a more rockier sound reminiscent of their earlier releases rather than the epic scope of Warnings/Promises. The result underlines the band’s credentials as one of Britain’s best bands but which occasionally leaves you pining for a song as measured and layered as El Capitan or I Understand It~.

Make Another World was recorded in just six weeks in Edinburgh with long-time producer Dave Eringa and is a fiery return that places the guitars firmly to the fore.

Lead single No Emotion is typical of what to expect, offsetting Roddy Womble’s punchy vocal delivery with some powerful guitar work that expertly come together over sweeping, chant-along choruses. One gets the sense that a lot of the tracks on Make Another World are designed to keep the mosh-pit extremely energetic and very, very sweaty indeed.

Commenting on the inspiration behind the long-player, Womble has stated: “I suppose it’s about cityscapes, modern language and the way a person makes a city and the city makes the person.”

As such, it’s built around skyscraping riffs, emotive lyrics and a highly-charged energy reminiscent of life in London and Edinburgh. It hits you hard from the outset – but is never less than compelling.

Opening track In Competition For The Worst Time blasts things off in style, hinting at the unapologetic style of bands like The Pixies. The pounding, scatter-shot drums are thrilling indeed, while the guitars scream out in confident style, as though the shackles of Warnings/Promises have well and truly been thrown off.

Everything (As It Moves) follows along in similar fashion, laying down another emphatic chorus that’s destined to become something of an anthem, before No Emotion really opens up the guitars and demonstrates the band’s continued sense of melody. It’s a cracking record.

Further into the album If It Takes You Home is a real heavy-hitter, an angry rant that truly recalls their earliest work and which will definitely delight their early followers.

But it’s Future Works that delivers the album’s first five-star offering. Ironically, it’s a slow-builder – moody, elegaic and utterly brilliant. It’s when the sceptics who made REM comparisons on Warnings/Promises are certain to rear their heads again but, for my money, it’s evidence of Idlewild at their most enthralling.

The organs are terrific, the interweaving guitars nicely low-key, the vocal harmonies enchanting and the drums truly atmospheric. It’s one of the undisputed album highlights.

Likewise, You And I Are Both Away, which capably demonstrates both sides of the band – sensitive and rousing in equal measure. It begins deceptively stripped down, before bursting to life for another epic chorus and the guitar work throughout is truly electrifying.

Thereafter, A Ghost In The Arcade is a rousing big hitter that’s nicely offset by the slower-building Once In Your Life and the concluding Finished It Remains that rounds things off in suitably heady style.

In the final analysis, Make Another World is probably more likely to appeal to the ardent Idlewild fans rather than the newcomers but it’s a thrilling reminder of their often under-rated talents. It’ll certainly dust away the cobwebs, while providing the odd sweeping anthem to kick back and enjoy.

Download picks: In Competition For The Worse Time, No Emotion, Future Works, You And I Are Both Away, If It Takes You Home, Once In Your Life.

Track listing:

  1. In Competition For The Worst Time
  2. Everything (As It Moves)
  3. No Emotion
  4. Make Another World
  5. If It Takes You Home
  6. Future Works
  7. You And I Are Both Away
  8. A Ghost In The Arcade
  9. Once In Your Life
  10. Finished It Remains