When a band returns from a lengthy hibernation, it's easy to cast doubts on their remaining creativity. On Silentspace, the Lotus Eaters awaken from their 15-year slumber without a shred of rust. The group has aged like fine wine. Jeremy Kelly's ringing guitars still reflect the early-'80s glimmer of classic Lotus Eaters songs like "The First Picture of You" and "German Girl" on "Bodywave" and "Can Your Kisses Fly?" Furthermore, the romantic croon of vocalist Peter Coyle has lost none of its sullen beauty. Long before bands such as Travis and Coldplay wept over acoustic riffs, the Lotus Eaters crafted folksy melancholic pop on their 1984 debut album, No Sense of Sin. On Silentspace, the Lotus Eaters retain the stripped-down sound of their early work but update it with subtle touches of techno and trip-hop. On "Feel It," pulsating synths throb behind the soothing vocals of Coyle and Saree Williams. The Lotus Eaters had never used a female singer before, and the addition of Williams' lovely voice on "Feel It" heightens the track's sensual ambiance. While the jangly "Sara" is appealingly retro, the Lotus Eaters are most impressive when they're attempting the unexpected like the sped-up trip-hop rhythms of "Face of the Century" or the otherworldly psychedelia of "Lost in Flow." Fans of the group's youthful innocence might be stunned by the graphic bondage scenes detailed in the gripping "Minimal Emotion," but the Lotus Eaters grew up in their long absence. However, the band didn't get old; they simply got better. It might be difficult for some to connect with Silentspace at first, but it's almost impossible to let go after repeated spins; like the group, it's a sleeping beauty.
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AllMusic Review by Michael Sutton