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Out Of Nothing by Embrace

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Reviewed on 10th September 2004.


Out Of Nothing

By Embrace

"Yeah, but can you dance to it?" Shouts my younger brother as I sit attentively, ears wreathed in concentration, trying amazingly hard to enjoy Embrace's new album. The short, sharp and swift answer is; No you cannot dance to it. However, the 10 ethereal tracks on offer from this latest release have left me feeling jolly good about myself. With some glorious moments of gospel choir and lullaby-esque piano lines, Embrace show they are still able to create their trademark, vibrant, optimistic sound.

Wrapped in lush string arrangements and mainly comprised of piano-led power ballads, there is a definitive rousing ambience that pervades 'Out of Nothing', even if the one-paced demeanour of the album becomes slightly overbearing at times. Dreamy, sweetly contrived melodies and rich, simple harmony helps to achieve a lot in the way of atmosphere, but there is little in the way of rhythm. This I do not like. It gives the sense that each song just plods along nicely without ever getting anywhere. But the reliance on texture, depth and feeling is what Embrace are all about, and they do it with a heartfelt passion that deserves some respect, if not recognition.

There is a problem with this album though. Whilst it will undoubtedly appeal to certain people, namely hardcore fans, I'm not sure it will provide all that a fabulous base to start an imminent comeback. Embrace aren't re-inventing themselves, but they don't seem to have returned to their glory days either. The fact that the first single 'Gravity', which is probably the best song on the album save 'Someday', is a Coldplay cast-off, totally illustrates the point. It could be said that the torch of British Indie has truly been passed on. Whether Embrace were ever the torchbearers is a subject for further debate.

Disappointingly, this decidedly average album could turn out to be a swan song for Embrace, who are not an average band really. How sad. If only they'd have gone to South America for two years and returned with a Latino-tinged, carnival style spice-stomp of an album. One can only wish...



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On 21st September 2004 at 16:14 Anonymous 3213 wrote...

I have to say i find Embrace dull. Very dull. I like something to get my blood going, and as has been pointed out to me by a mate, when a band makes a come back, they need to pull out their heaviest bat and wollop everyone for a 6, rather than trying to take a quick single and ending up with a leg by. Sorry to bring cricket into it, but they are dull. zzzzzz


On 22nd September 2004 at 08:51 Anonymous 2538 wrote...

Today is a very good day to bring cricket into anything!!


On 22nd September 2004 at 09:26 Anonymous 2581 wrote...

Now whay didnt i think of the cricket analogy?!


On 3rd October 2004 at 20:30 Anonymous 2600 wrote...

Personally, I love the album. Easily the best thing they've done since The Good Will Out. It's just a shame that the first single from it was written by Chris Martin...


On 13th October 2004 at 17:10 Anonymous 2941 wrote...

I prefer the last album If You've Never Been. This one is too brash


On 22nd January 2005 at 11:14 Anonymous 3722 wrote...

they need to go back to the cavalier music of Drawn From Memory



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