The first Spiritualized release in three years finds Jason Spaceman has not changed his ways. Every lyric is about drugs, drink and the subsequent ennui, and the music is still excellent. Never a truly guitar-based band, Spiritualized continues to fine tune its sound. A gospel choir appears on nearly every track, strings pop up all over the place, the old wailing harmonica pops up here and there, and the guitar, well the guitar serves up bluesy licks as well as kick-starts the more rocking tracks like “On Fire,” and “The Twelve Steps.” The experimental nature (noise) is absent, but then again, isn’t innovation the point of experimentation? No one can claim this band isn’t innovative. After dragging a bit in the middle the album picks up brilliantly at the end with “Won’t Get To Heaven” and closes with the powerful, soul-wrenching spiritual “Lord Can You Hear Me.”
Spiritualized has found its path, and it is clear, bright, beautiful and drug-addled.
– Gavin Adair