Built To Spill: There Is No Enemy

~ Monday, 1 February 2010
If you believe the press for Boise Idaho’s Built To Spill’s seventh album, There Is No Enemy, then, as far as all the leading rock mags go, 2010 is their year. They all might think they’re bound for glory but for me, there was nothing immediate or exciting or pulsating or refreshing or anything of any great excitement on the first hearing of this album. I listened to it again to see what I was missing. By the fifth listen it still didn’t connect. I made myself listen for a sixth time while making the dinner, then it started to work its magic and I was singing along to Hindsight.

There Is No Enemy took three and a half years to make and is far more breezy than their normal fare. Pat is a strong contender as the stand out track but that’s more to do with the fact that it’s a bit more punky than the rest with a rawer edge. On Nowhere Lullaby and Good Ol’ Boredom we meander through Roxy Music terrain and with songs like Things Fall Apart maybe the critics are right.

Overall we’re never too far from the safe hinterland of The Flaming Lips and Mercury Rev with a massive dollop of long Neil Young and Crazy Horse guitar work and some clever drumming for good measure. Vocally, things are just a bit one dimensional for it to be their year but equally there’s loads of warmth and some rustic Americana charm.

It’s a slow burner but worth it in the end.


[][][][ (3.5/5)

Review by Charlie Brown