Kaiser Chiefs

Yours Truly, Angry Mob

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It's no secret that the Leeds-based Kaiser Chiefs love the Jam. The band's 2005 excellent but uneven debut Employment was an infectious salute to all things mod and Brit-pop, boasting three solid singles ("I Predict a Riot," "Oh My God" and "Everyday I Love You Less and Less") that held great promise for future endeavors. On Yours Truly, Angry Mob, the group takes a little more time in establishing its pop acumen, offering no immediate pay-offs despite its insatiable thirst for FM melody. Opener and first single "Ruby," a rowdy, mid-tempo singalong that gets everything right but feels a little tossed-off and disposable, is indicative of Angry Mob's first half -- "Heat Dies Down," "Love's Not a Competition (But I'm Winning)" and "Highroyds" have all of their cogs well-oiled and reliably dressed, but there's nothing here that warrants the inevitable second listen in which a perfectly constructed pop song's true genius is revealed. To that end, Angry Mob is creatively back loaded (though not genius), relying on a series of rewarding and occasionally subversive tracks like "I Can Do It Without You," "Learnt My Lesson Well," "My Kind of Guy" and closer "Retirement" to avoid the dreaded sophomore slump, revealing a band that is likely to continue pumping out albums with a few great songs on them until the requisite "Greatest Hits" collection arrives. [Yours Truly, Angry Mob is also available in an edition with three bonus tracks.]

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