There is no doubting Ladytron’s identity here, for their self-titled fifth album is a statement of intent as an unlikely comeback after seven years away. Despite the long period of silence the band keep a similar approach, though do bolster the drumming department with the arrival of Sepultura’s Igor Cavalera. He helps power a big boned, well-built electronic band that deliver both power and poise. ‘Until The Fire’ is a great match for the album’s striking artwork, ‘The Animals’ is a show of strength and ‘You’ve Changed’ carries the best intro and beat, an absolute cracker of a rhythm track. ‘The Island’ typifies the band’s ‘guns out’ approach, but after a while the clean, powerful sound would benefit from a bit more light and shade. There are elements of this in a subtler approach to ‘The Mountain’, where a softer brush leads to deeper emotion from Marnie’s vocal that hints at her solo work. Overall though, while her vocals and the big, concrete electro beats are an effective combination, the relative lack of killer hooks mean that Ladytron are easier to admire than deeply love.
Ben Hogwood. 4 out of 5