Amidst a tidal wave of mediocrity it’s ‘Jesus Walks’ which shines brightest, a stand up and fight call to arms propelled by a bed of gorgeous synths, bold brash drum beats and a singalong fist pumping chorus. You can even forgive the boy band style key change, a technique which is frequently deployed elsewhere to infuriating effect. Whilst the listening public can breathe a huge sigh of relief knowing that the prospect of a Kanye West cover has been gratefully averted, ‘Better Of Dead’ sees frontman Ian Watkins try his hand at rapping, an idea worse yet in practice than in principal. What we get is a misdirected tirade against liars, fakes, haters, religion and the world as we know it, a rock/rap hybrid that’s more Dappy & Brian May than Aerosmith & Run DMC.
On a more positive note, ‘We Bring An Arsenal’ with its terrace like chanting is an anthem in the making and destined to be part of their live sets for some time to come. Essentially it shares much of the same musical DNA as their previous records but with a vitality which is lacking elsewhere. Equally successful is the stripped back acoustic territory explored on ‘Somedays’ which has a subtlety to it that is often lost amidst the bombast.
Where previously Lostprophets blazed a trail they’ve been caught up by the youthful likes of You Me At Six and Young Guns who you could quite easily mistake most of the material for here on blind listening. ‘Weapons’ has no shortage of big choruses, slick production and crunching riffs but is let down by tired lyrics and too many forgettable songs.