Exclusive: Kele reveals the tracks on the new album
Speaking exclusively to BlocParty.net, Kele has named the songs which are set to appear on the second Bloc album! The recording of the album has just been completed, with Kele writing and re-writing lyrics right up to the point of recording them. Rather than working on all the songs that they'd written, Bloc Party decided to concentrate on the select few which they were particularly confident about. Here then are the 13 songs which have been completed and which will be gracing your CD players and iPods in the (hopefully) not too distant future:'A Prayer To The Lord''England' (formerly 'Blue Moon')'Hunting For Witches' (woop!)'It Started In An Afternoon''Kreuzberg''On' (formerly 'Wet')'Seroxat''Song For Clay (Disappear Here)''Sunday''Uniform' (the album centrepiece?)'Waiting For The 7:18' 'We Were Lovers' (formerly 'Cells Shaped Like Stars')'Where Is Home?' (formerly 'Perfect Teens')Not all of these songs will appear on the album...the band will decide which ones to omit after the tracks have been mixed. Any songs left off are likely to appear as b-sides at some point in the future though. Check back for more updates!
Fan review...McCarren Park Pool, 29.07.06
Gig: 29.07.06 - Brooklyn, New York - McCarren Park Pool
Reviewer: Heather from Seattle Photo: Brooklyn Vegan
The show was very unique, with the stage set up on the edge of an oversized, abandoned swimming pool. It was very crowded and quite a large-scale production. The sound was great and there were no technical glitches that I noticed (as opposed to the NJ show from two nights earlier). Nearly every song was drowned out by the crowd singing along. The new tracks sounded tight and the band's enthusiasm was contagious. My favourite line of the evening came from Kele (as per usual): "The sign says 'No Diving'. Know what I say? Fuck that shit." Then, he jumped off the massive stage to come down into the crowd for a moment. At the encore, the group came back to the stage armed with large squirt guns. They proceeded to cool off the crowd by squirting all of us. After the encore finished, all four of them jumped down into the crowd to hand out the setlists and shake hands. Jumping back up on stage, they waved goodbye and Russell proceeded to squirt a topless Matt. It was a superb ending to the show.
Setlist: Waiting For The 7:18 / Positive Tension / Banquet / Blue Light / She's Hearing Voices / Hunting for Witches / This Modern Love / Like Eating Glass / Little Thoughts / Helicopter [encore] So Here We Are / Price of Gasoline / Compliments / The Pioneers
Labels: Gig_reviews, Setlists
Fan review...Bank of America Pavilion, 28.07.06
Gig: 28.07.06 - Boston, Massachusetts - Bank of America Pavilion
Reviewer: Derek Davies (originally posted on GWFAS)
Anyone who's been reading this website for any time at all can pretty much immediately discern that my favourite band is far and away Bloc Party, and for this reason I already knew Bloc's show in Boston two nights ago would be one of my all-time favorites before it even happened. However, it was a longer journey than usual to get to the venue, as we had to take the ferry over to the mainland from Martha's Vineyard before driving about an hour to Boston to get to the Bank of America Pavilion, which proved to be my favourite large-scale venue I've ever attended and a pretty great environment for Bloc Party's anthemic, fist-pumping angular guitar-rock. With me were my favorite trio of indie girls, the always-lovely Merry, India, and Lizzy, and despite a glaring lack of testosterone outside of that which was supplied by me (which is to say, not much), we had a fucking splendid time.
As anticipated, the band did not disappoint, ripping through every track I'd wanted to hear from 'Silent Alarm' as well as two amazing tracks from their upcoming and as-yet-untitled sophomore album, 'Waiting For The 7.18' and the incredible 'Uniform'. While I'm extremely upset I didn't get to hear 'Hunting For Witches' (another new track that's seen some exposure in live settings) as the audiences the next two nights in New Jersey and Brooklyn did, I'll settle for what was, with the exception of the inclusion of 'Tulips' over 'Little Thoughts', essentially the perfect Bloc Party setlist. Kele and co. even hooked us up with 'Two More Years', the exclusion of which from the band's Intonation setlist last month nearly reduced Lizzy and I to inconsolable messes at the time, as well as set-closer 'The Pioneers', another phenomenal track we missed out on last time around. More and more, Kele is proving himself to be one of the most intelligent and charismatic frontmen in indie rock, and at no point was this more apparent than when a surely-inebriated prototypically-surly Bostonian in a Red Sox jersey jumped up on the corner of a stage and started clapping and drunkenly-dancing in front of the audience during 'Price of Gasoline' in the encore. Rather than letting the security guards take care of the man, Kele walked over and put his arm around him while still singing, and brought him over to the mic to share lead vocals on the chorus with him, before leaving the man to take over vocals on his own. When the guy had difficulty keeping up with the words, Kele gently led him over to Gordy's mic to take over on the much more simplistic backing vocals (just grunting "ugh" every other second or so). Afterwards Kele took the man aside and they shared a laugh about something before the certainly overwhelmed fan returned to the audience. It was certainly interesting to see Okereke, who wrote such a scathingly-anti-American song as 'Helicopter' (with it's "stop being so American" lyrics), embrace a fan so obnoxious and stereotypically-American as this dude was in his drunken grandeur, but this sequence of events was a true testament to his charisma and ability to work a crowd as a rock and roll frontman. Bloc Party is in a very exciting place right now as a band, and their next album should elevate them to an entire new level of popularity and critical acclaim. With 'Silent Alarm' the band garnered nearly unanimous critical praise but also gained a lot of haters who called the group Gang of Four knock-offs and accused them of being just another run-of-the-mill guitar rock band trying to cash in on the dance rock fad. However, with their new album Bloc are trying to shake such accusations ("dance punk will not be a noose around our neck", Kele said in a recent interview) and have traded in their danceable, angular guitar riffs for much a much more languorous, morose sound like that first hinted at on 'Two More Years'. In fact, with the exception of possibly 'Hunting For Witches', there's nary a single track that's 100% danceable the entire way through, as the lion's share of the songs are either much slower-paced, moody affairs all the way through or follow the formula established by 'So Here We Are', in which the song starts out slow and builds to furious climax before it's completion, as can be seen in both 'Waiting For The 7.18' and 'Uniform'. Setlist: Waiting For The 7:18 / Positive Tension / Banquet / Blue Light / She's Hearing Voices / Uniform / This Modern Love / Like Eating Glass / So Here We Are / Helicopter [encore] Two More Years / Price of Gasoline / Tulips / The Pioneers
Labels: Gig_reviews, Setlists
Fan review...The Stone Pony, 27.07.06
Gig: 27.07.06 - Asbury Park, New Jersey - The Stone PonyReviewer: Markus from Delaware (the guy yelling "Skeleton" at the top of his lungs between each song)Photos: Heather from SeattleBloc Party at The Stone Pony did what they do best: churn out bangers. I arrived and was surprised to find an outdoor venue, but my ticket did say "rain or shine" so I wasn't worried. Mew was accessible but I wish I could have heard their album before the show. Bloc went on after an intro from a local D.J. 'Waiting...' was the first one, and was different from the demo I have of the song from the spring. Mostly effects on their new equipment (Kele's Gretsch is beautiful), the rhythm was clear and direct. They ran through a few favourites like 'Banquet', 'She's Hearing Voices', and 'Positive Tension', but then...oh man. I've heard all the demos circulating the net recently but nothing can do justice to 'Hunting For Witches' live, which I believe has been reworked slightly. I think the people around me, who I'm sure haven't heard the song before, actually really got into it. Kele prefaced it with "be nice", but no need when the song was so excitingly frantic and dug so deep. Best song of the show. Bloc Party dedicated 'Blue Light' to some fans they met before the show. 'This Modern Love' connected well with a lot of people. They went off for the first encore of what is usually two. It started raining lightly, but no worries. I was loving it and the Bloc didn't seem to care. They gave us 'Tulips' and 'Price of Gasoline' before they were forced offstage, despite an angry crowd. For the record though it really did seem like they were pulled from us rather than them just not wanting to play in the rain. A sad end to what was looking like the best show I've ever seen from them (this is my fourth). Other funny things from the show:
- Two (separate) stage divers hugging Kele before jumping back into the crowd to escape security.
- Gordy using different vocal textures, like growling, during songs, which I thought was bloody brilliant and funny.
- Russell having a problem with guitars the whole show, which I think was the venue's fault.
- Kele asking Tong to say something and all he could say was: " ...I love you all! I really do!" Haha.
Great show that should have been twice the length. I didn't even get 'The Pioneers'! Even when the crowd screamed "rain or shine" for five minutes upon them being pulled, no success. Oh well. Next time hopefully there will be a new album out and I'll get to see them indoors.
Waiting For The 7:18 / Positive Tension / Banquet / Blue Light / She's Hearing Voices / Hunting For Witches / This Modern Love / Like Eating Glass / So Here We Are / Helicopter [encore] Tulips / Price of Gasoline [thunderstorm stopped play!]
Labels: Gig_reviews, Setlists
'Something Glorious' interviews Kele
SomethingGlorious.com, a blog inspired by a song well known around this neck of the woods, managed to secure an exclusive interview with Kele just before Bloc Party's headlining appearance at Chicago's Intonation Festival last month.
As is usually the case with independent blogs, the interview is both insightful and original, focusing on the music and giving Kele plenty of time to lay out his vision for album number two. Read it here. This interview also adds weight to the growing movement that suspects Kele of working for Amerie's record company, after Mr. Okereke delivers yet another speech on the merits of '1 Thing'. (Note: the movement currently consists of me, my Dad and the bloke from across the road who smells of wee. To sign up, contact email@example.com).
Also, there's an interview with Kele and Matt in the current issue of 'Relevant' magazine, kindly transcribed for your reading pleasure.
Labels: Interviews, Press