Album Review Kaiser Chiefs - Employment

You can make your references to Blur, Madness and even pick up on The Beach Boys’ influence, but Kaiser Chiefs have made this their own.

Here it is. The big one. The album DIY has been waiting more than 18 months for. The album that promised to bring pop back to the masses, put Leeds back on the map and change the face of music forever. And boy, does it deliver.

From the slick opening of synth-laden ‘Everyday I Love You Less And Less’ to the pulverising dirtiness of ‘Saturday Night’, diverted through the chaos of single ‘I Predict a Riot’, Kaiser Chiefs have all the bases covered. Terribly British and ever-so-proud, ‘Employment’ is a right ol’ mockney-knees up, via the working men’s clubs of Yorkshire. ‘Time Honoured Tradition’ is the anthem for our generation; never before has skanking to t’Chiefs seemed like such a good idea, with its bouncing chorus and staggered verses.

You can make your references to Blur, Madness and even pick up on The Beach Boys’ influence, but Kaiser Chiefs have made this their own. Expressing their cheeky charm, the lyrics could be a falling point for any other band, but here it just adds to the exuberant attitude. ‘’Cos we are birds of a feather and you can be the fat one’ - it’s not exactly the sort of thing Keane would sing. And that’s a good thing.

However, ‘Employment’ isn’t without fault. The thrill of live favourite ‘Na Na Na Na Naa’ is lost, toned down for the album and missing the energy it once boasted, instead sounding forced and dry. It’s reciprocated on other tracks too, but surprisingly ‘You Can Have It All’ thrives on record, showing the subtle but captivating slower side of the band. Album highlight ‘What Did I Ever Give You?’ is a creeping success, as it meanders to its ‘Ghost Town’-esque peak.

This is a fantastic debut album - it’s exhilarating, refreshing and inspirational. Yet for Kaiser Chiefs’ debut, you feel they could have done a little better.

 

Records & Merch

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