After a five year break, The Rapture return to the recording studio with their latest LP, In The Grace Of Your Love. Originally cited as “the forerunners of the post-punk revival” in the early 2000s, there is certainly no evidence of their roots on this album. Most recently, the now trio (after losing bassist Matt Safer) have become more an amalgamation of dance, rock, house and electro, and this album sees an even greater shift towards the latter. The result is an album which is more catchy and accessible, with exceptionally diverse tracks.
Opening track “Sail Away” opens with Luke Genner’s distinguishable voice. It’s a sound listeners will either love or hate but it provides the backbone of The Rapture’s sound. The track is strong, despite its repetitive nature, though is not the band’s most impressive work.
“Miss You” is very similar to “Pieces Of The People We Love”, the title track off the band’s 2006 album. This is due to the clapping riff and emphasis on Genner’s voice, as opposed to overriding synth and guitar. The track falls short of “Pieces…”, however, as it does not attempt to add anything to the familiar sound.
“Blue Bird” is where the album starts to take its new direction, opening with a Queen-esque note, and the band’s renowned guitar riffs, although these are rarely features on In The Grace Of Your Love. It’s the least dance sounding track on the album, and is a refreshing change of pace that works well.
“Come Back To Me” is a standout track which will undoubtedly be remixed by house DJs. The track’s beats combined with an accordion and chorus back up vocals sound ridiculous on paper, but work perfectly together to create the In The Grace Of Your Love’s highest point.
Less exciting tracks include title track “In The Grace of Your Love” which is uninspiring and meshes a confusing drumming pattern with an electro riff. “Can You Find A Way” contains a similar electro riff, which sounds reminiscent of Hot Butter’s ’72 hit “Popcorn”. It didn’t work for Crazy Frog and it doesn’t work for The Rapture. The track even ends on a dated fade out, as though to emphasis the song’s familiarity.
“How Deep Is Your Love” changes things up again, with the inclusion of piano and a more mature sounding track. The chorus builds up to be more house music like, without overriding the piano and Genner’s voice.
Final track “It Takes Time To Be A Man” is an interesting way to round out the album. The background piano riff sounds more hip hop than anything, and if it weren’t for Genner’s unmistakable voice, you wouldn’t think it was the same band.
Overall, In The Grace Of Your Love is hard to judge, due to the many different sounds and directions of the tracks. There is no way this album can be accused of sounding all the same, which has been a pitfall of The Rapture’s previous releases. Despite a few lacklustre tracks, In The Grace Of Your Love successfully highlights the band’s new found sound, even if it means the loss of the scratchy guitar riffs.
Review Score: 7/10