Tuesday 20 March 2012


Today, Thieves Like Us release new album Bleed Bleed Bleed following around five years of success since first appearing on a Kitsuné CD back in 2007. Via various international cities, such as Berlin and New York, the glittery dance-pop trio found themselves finally in Paris, making music that reeks of the French capital's ineffable stylish cool.

Finding solace in throwback 80s sounds like David Bowie and Iggy Pop, in their most glam of days, their music finds a convenient shelf space next to what would be a cross between contemporary stars of the late 2000s, Hot Chip and Crystal Castles - according to their Bio on YouTube. I don't find the comparison unfavourable. That 80s twist, however, gave them an edge and a different sound, and has evolved into what we hear now.

The album has this glorious sound, this echoing gloom that has been turned into wonderfully danceable tracks. This one below, 'Stay Blue', is a prime example (just the title alone). The bassline is deceptively chripy, a street-wise-sounding lot of trumps on a swag-along-the-pavement beat. Add to this a glitsy arrangement of synth strings that envelop everything else, and you have yourself a pretty nice song.

It's catchy, summer-afternoon music, perfectly aligned to the sun as it drops - not as it rises. If you're worried that this is an anomaly on the album then don't worry: the same atmosphere is garnered through the next series of songs, the swaggering attitude of title track 'Bleed Bleed Bleed' is a good example, as is the cocksure beat of 'Still Life', which features in it some laid-back, jangly guitar.

Darker still - but dark like a sun behind clouds, not dark like a dark room - is 'Fatima' and 'The Killing Revelation', the latter finding its melancholy pierced by cheery guitar stabs and pretty virtuoso bass. Actually, 'Bleed Bleed Bleed II' came as a pleasant surprise - almost a remix of the fist track of the album, it's a relatively energetic punt what with a little distorted guitar and a fast-paced chorus with some relentless drums thrown in for good measure.

Then we have the utter 80s vibe of 'Maria Marie' - listen below. It couldn't be any more that era if it tried. Everything from the vocals, to the slowly galloping beat, the empty echoes of the synthed-up bass and the blippy melodic notes fizzing around on top, smacks of many yesteryears ago.

That's not to say it's not a beautiful song, because it is. It is proper electro-pop. It's electro-pop in a suit, with a serious head on its shoulders.

The rest of the album goes as you'd expect it to, from vocal-heavy 'Memory Song', and a similarly-vibed 'Your Love Runs Still' (which could be a Hot Chip song, if Hot Chip loved these kinds of basslines as much as Thieves Like Us do). Closing on 'Worthy To Me', Bleed Bleed Bleed finishes with expansive, ambient sounds - possibly on the most 'serious' song of the album - and finishes favourably. It's an album of much sameness, but that is not a bad thing. If anything, it's a good thing.

I mean, you could even say Mozart sounds a bit samey. All those violins. More of the same sound, if the sound is really nice, is a good thing. It's the reason why you'd listen to the same song 10 times in a row. And if you'd do that, why not go one better and listen to a whole album of similar sounds?

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Listen to Thieves Like Us on SoundCloud
• They have a Myspace page, too
Official site for Thieves Like Us
Facebook page
• Follow Thieves Like Us on Twitter
• (They're on YouTube, as well)
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