Quicken The Heart

Maximo Park

Warp Records, 2009


REVIEW BY: Peter Vissers


Maxïmo Park distinguishes itself from other indie pop bands by making cheerful tunes that are so incredibly infectious you’ll find them hard to forget. Their debut album, A Certain Trigger, was a success and their second album, Our Earthly Pleasures, turned out to be pretty good as well. Their latest album called Quicken The Heart is quite similar in style. When compared to their previous albums, it does feel like they try to be taken a bit more seriously. The distinct voice of singer Paul Smith hasn’t changed and nearly all songs are up-tempo and catchy.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The opening track, “Wraithlike,” is a recognizable tune. It’s not as solid as most of the songs from their previous albums, though. The same goes for the second track. “The Penultimate Clinch” is easy on the ear, very recognizable and quite catchy. On lead single “The Kids Are Sick Again,” it sounds like they’ve glued multiple songs together, making for a very sloppy tune. “A Cloud Of Mystery” is quite catchy but very predictable as well. It’s not a complicated song, but actually most of the cuts on the album are fairly unsophisticated. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but some of the songs contain too many clichés.

The next two tracks, “Calm” and “In Another World,” both clearly show lack of inspiration. “In Another World” is quite infectious but easily forgettable as well. Meanwhile, “Let’s Get Clinical” is a fun tune whose sound and lyrics remind me of The Undertones. The lyrics are pretty corny, though and the song is, again, a bit of a cliché. “Overland, West Of Suez” is perhaps one of the best tracks of the album. Even this song gets a little dull towards the end, however.

Listening to Maxïmo Park’s previous albums felt like a relief after 38 minutes of Quicken The Heart. I’m not saying it’s a horrible record; it’s just not as infectious as their previous work. There are only a few songs you’ll remember. You can clearly hear the lack of inspiration. They’re good musicians and I certainly think they’ll produce more good releases in the future, but Quicken The Heart is a mediocre record that sounds like it was written in a terrible rush.

Rating: C-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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