Quicken the Heart

Studio Album by released in 2009
Quicken the Heart's tracklist:
Wraithlike
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The Penultimate Clinch
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The Kids Are Sick Again
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A Cloud of Mystery
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Calm
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In Another World (You Would've Found Yourself by Now)
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Let's Get Clinical
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Roller Disco Dreams
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Tanned
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Questing, Not Coasting
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Overland, West of Suez
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I Haven't Seen Her in Ages
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Quicken the Heart review

Maximo Park's intellectual creation

2 years after its album Our Earthly Pleasures Maximo Park releases Quicken The Heart, which is by no means inferior to the things it created before. Whatever the critics say, Maximo Park is not just another ordinary British post-punk indie-rock band – the guys have confidently conquered their own special field in the music world. Their songs may definitely be called intellectual and the band itself – one of the smartest and brightest manifestations of the modern alternative pop-culture. This is just the case when music and words not only complement each other, but clash, no matter how odd it may sound. The powerful electro-guitar riffs and inspiring keyboards show contrast with the lyrics that at times can really be worthy of citing at a poetic contest. The release of the first record A Certain Trigger has set the tone for the band and for the following 4 years it hasn’t failed to follow it even once. Its second record Our Earthly Pleasures was recorded with the help of producer Gil Norton (Pixies, Foo Fighters) was a little more “convenient” in terms of the ideal sound. While recording Quicken The Heart the band has turned to its original sounding, more aggressive and dynamic, the one that helped it conquer its native Europe and the whole world with it.

The feeling of escape on Quicken The Heart

The record opener is Wraithlike, it starts with the words “Here’s a song that finally you can understand” – it’s the dead love and faided memories anthem. The energy beat is gradually accompanied by the siren-like sound, evidently, used here to convey the storm of emotions of something that is erasing from the memory but is hardly to be forgotten at all: “They said I’d forget her face. That’s a lie – it’s just not as real as before,” – sings Paul Smith, the band’s frontman. The Penultimate Clinch is a retro-track reminding of the early Cure sound; here sounds the obvious guitar theme that grows throughout the whole song. One of the main tracks of the album is The Kids Are Sick Again. It is the gradual rise of the emotional intensity that reaches its peak at the very end of the song, where we hear the chorus for the first time (this composition structure is quite typical for Smith). This track cannot be left without comparing it to the famous The Kids Aren’t All Right by the punk-band The Offspring – the title clearly indicates it. Listening to the song you can understand that the spell of despair is evidently present here. As Paul Smith himself has said about it, the song's ultimate feeling is that of escape, revolt, and the pulsing atmospheric beginning helps to deliver it. This is another acknowledgement of the band’s uniqueness and their best act – the clash of the goomy and exquisite lyrics and inspiring roaring and energetically powerful music. The track Tanned is also worth mentioning. It tells about the summer romance, that gradually flows into that of autumn. The electronic variations that close the song may not be occasional, for it was released on the Warp label specializing mainly in electronic music, which is why Maximo Park is an obvious exception here.

Aggressive, inspiring and sophisticated sounding

As mentioned above, Maximo Park will definitely please the audience with its new record – it is back to prove it to everyone: intellectual rockers still exist. The sound is aggressive, inspiring and sophisticated. This is the sounding that suits perfectly the created image of intellectual rebels. It is the image associated with the real British rocker and their compatriots have appreciated it: the previous album has reached number two on the UK album charts. Maximo Park definitely belongs to the type of educated intellectual indie-rockers. The lyrics done by the band’s leader Paul Smith are full of exquisiteness and furious drive. The music is for those who realize their presence in life, for those who are not willing to live by the imposed rules and are not ready to follow the crowd. Maybe that is why the band is so popular among the thinking young people of Europe and the US, who do not want to accept the consumerist’s way of life and the power of mediocrity. That is what Maximo Park’s songs are about and you can read it between the lines.