Tag Archives: Kaiser Chiefs

That letter’s done ‘K…

I did a much pacier job on the letter K. This letter was overpopulated with impressive works from solo singer-songwriters (of varying vintages), saw a lot of retro rock from very hirsute lads, and featured stinkers from a couple of acts.

Here’s the resultant top 10:

  1. Paul Kelly – “Greatest Hits – Songs from the South Volumes 1 & 2”
  2. Ben Kweller – “Changing Horses”
  3. Carole King – “Tapestry”
  4. Ben Kweller – “Sha Sha”
  5. Kings Of Leon – “Youth and Young Manhood”
  6. Ben Kweller – “Ben Kweller”
  7. K’Naan – “The Dusty Foot Philosopher”
  8. Kaiser Chiefs – “Employment”
  9. Ed Kuepper – “Sings His Greatest Hits For You”
  10. Kings of Leon – “Aha Shake Heartbreak”

Now looking at my singles pile, here’s an act I regret not getting to review:

And, now my customary question: what K albums did I miss that you’d recommend?

432. Kaiser Chiefs – “Yours Truly, Angry Mob”

Songs built around the name of a female were forever spoiled for me when Beautiful South penned the very biting Song for Whoever.

I am thus torn when I throw on this CD and immediately hear about Ruby, especially as the chorus pretty much just consists of repeating said moniker at rapid fire.

Now, the lads might be honouring July’s birthstone, using cockney slang for a curry, or even serenading a spaniel I know, but the smart money’s on the combo of there maybe being a lass called Ruby, or that the band couldn’t think of anything more substantial to sing:

The single in question personifies all that is good and all that is frustrating about this album.

These guys have more ability than most bands floating around.  The songwriting is full of clever turns of phrase and pacing tricks. They have mastered the post-mod, new-wave British sound.  They could well be the new Jam, but they just don’t seem to be pushing it hard enough. 

Ruby is about 90% towards being a great track, and much of the album teases and disappoints in that fashion.  There’s a lot that is pleasant to listen to, but nothing has the edge or the memorability I craved.

But let’s blame the BS:

File under: Unacceptably unruly

431. Kaiser Chiefs – “Employment”

As mentioned somewhere else here, I have shown sporadic interest in bands who might fall under the Britpop banner.

I was an enthusiastic fan(to varying degrees) of the Stone Roses, Inspiral Carpets and the Wonderstuff .  I did own some Blur on cassette, and eventually picked up some Oasis.

I less au fait with the more recent aspirants to Britpop royalty. I missed the Arctic Monkeys bus somewhat. I was there early on for the Kaiser Chiefs however.  Perhaps it was their clever decision to name themselves after a South African soccer franchise, but mostly likely it was the gushing praise they received in the press upon birth.

The praise was justified, as these guys cornered the market for wryly intelligent power pop for a few moments, conjuring up images of the Kinks, along with their more recent brethren.  The songs go well with a pint, and would get many a bad-haircutted pasty lad onto a dancefloor:

As is often the case with debuts, this CD has an abundance of clever, original singles.  Indeed, a more experienced or jaded band might have spread the ideas more thinly from song to song. Oh My God is a surprisingly slow build single for example:

There’s enough on this album to reignite a British bromance…

File under: Good job lads