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#Silent Alarm

Alpha Games

Once again, Bloc Party have returned from a lengthy hiatus and followed up a baffling, mixed-bag album with one that harkens back to their glory days. Roughly every half-decade since 2008’s Intimacy knocked the post-punk revivalists off their axis, Bloc Party have produced an album that feels like a direct reaction to the one that preceded it. In 2012, Four attempted to console fans aghast that Intimacy’s queasy electronics had sidelined one of the tightest rhythm sections in indie rock. By 2016’s Hymns, that rhythm section (bassist Gordon Moakes and drummer Matt Tong) had quit the band, leaving frontman Kele Okereke and guitarist Russell Lissack to craft a weird franken-child of gospel, dance, and stadium rock by their lonesomes. Like clockwork, here’s Alpha Games, a record that seems destined to bear a sticker emblazoned with the one “return to form” quote the label can track down.
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