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In Dream

NBHAP Rating: 3,9/5


[one_half last=”yes”]EDITORS
In Dream

Release-Date: 02.10.2015
Label: Play It Again Sam

01. No Harm
02. Ocean of Night
03. Forgiveness
04. Salvation
05. Life Is A Fear
06. The Law
07. Our Love
08. All The Kings
09. At All Cost
10. Marching Orders



Return as a unit

Challenge accepted. When EDITORS released their fourth studio LP The Weight of Your Love back in 2013 they might looked like a new band, following the departure of founding member Chris Urbanowicz but they didn’t sound like one. The result felt like a rushed, indecisive and mediocre record, compared to its predecessors. In Dream wants to make everything right again, labelling itself as the first ‘true’ album of the new EDITORS line-up and, indeed, the rearranged five-piece makes far more things right on their new LP than it makes wrong. It heads for a new direction while giving familiar qualities the space to return. It’s far more laidback than the previous work of the group, resulting in a cohesive character that gives the album its sinister flow. Still, it might be too ambitious to call it a concept album.

Tempting darkness

No Harm is obviously the smoothest way an EDITORS longplayer has ever started. A gloomy lullaby with tender and reduced instrumentation that leaves enough space for a haunting build-up. Ocean Of Noise accelerates the tempo with its gentle piano play and big stadium drums. Rachel Goswell of SLOWDIVE makes a first magical appearance as a backing vocalist, making the marvellous start of the record perfect. In Dream returns to the synthesizer-based sound of 2009’s In This Light And On This Evening although you won’t find a second floor filler like Papillon on this one. The album is carried by melancholia and Smith’s well-known world-weariness. The few slightly faster songs like the 80s wave pop-infected Life Is A Fear and Our Love are obviously too slow to dance to. But that’s okay ’cause the album works at its best when it slows down. The Law, the hypnotic duet between Smith and Goswell, is the finest example and the heart of the record. The floating At All Cost is another fine example.

All sparks burned out?

EDITORS have always been famous for walking the difficult tightrope between pop and darkness, intimacy and big gestures and In Dream is another example of that with all the positive and negative aspects. Marching Orders, the closing track, is a successful testament of ambition and the longest track the band recorded so far. Songs like the R&B-driven Forgiveness and the cheesy 80s pop of All The Kings fail to keep the quality level up since they can’t shake off the feeling of being forced pop hit attempts. Fans of the group’s earlier work will also miss the urgency of tunes like Munich or An End Has A Start. The self-produced fifth full-length by the Brits feels a bit too saturated and fainthearted at certain points. But, on the other side, there was just no space for a certain roughness in the dreamy microcosm of this release, it seems. That’s a side the ‘new’ EDITORS will hopefully (re-)discover on a potential sixth album. And as long as there are still challenges like these it’s a joy seeing them continue.

In Dream is a hypnotic dance between pop and darkness, resulting in the most cohesive EDITORS album so far while also lacking of the group’s former energy.