tue 16/10/2018

CD: Maccabees – Given to the Wild | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Maccabees – Given to the Wild

CD: Maccabees – Given to the Wild

Can the hotly tipped Britrock band fulfil their promise with their third album?

The Maccabees: The London quintet step up their game and take on rock's biggest boys

I was pretty sure I could hear the sound of a kitchen sink being chucked into the mix on "Feel To Follow", the third track on The Maccabees' third album. The London-based quintet has certainly lobbed everything else into the mix to deliver a long player (an old-school term for an old-school album) that looks set to be a fixture in both student union bars and end-of-year charts. Given to the Wild is easily the band's most mature album yet, even if it does wear its influences a little too noisily. Still, as I write it is currently outselling Adele's 21 and that's got to be a good thing.

It is highly unlikely that this youthful combo sat around a table and cynically decided to draw on the style of some of rock's biggest-selling – and often most annoying – bands, but there is a hefty whiff of Coldplay to tracks such as "Heave" and "Went Away". They certainly love a sensual build and a grandstanding finish. Over various tracks guitars swoop and chime, harmonies soar, drums crash and vocalist Orlando Weeks is partial to a crisp high-register posho croon that Chris Martin must be wishing he had copyrighted.

But away from the Coldplay tendencies, the Maccabees have an admirable scope and have U2 and Arcade Fire in their sights as well. "Forever I've Known", with its existential lovesick refrain of "Nothing stays forever" has iPhone-waving anthem written all over it, while the syncopated percussion on "Glimmer" adds welcome rhythmic refreshment. And just as you think they might be settling into a pomp rock rut, "Pelican" adds some uptempo zest. At 13 tracks and clocking in at not much less than an hour this is a little overlong, but full marks for ambition. Summer festival supremacy beckons.

See the short film made to accompany "Given to the Wild"

Orlando Weeks is partial to a posho croon that Chris Martin must wish he had copyrighted

rating

Editor Rating: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

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