Snow Patrol, Fallen Empires

Snow Patrol, <I>Fallen Empires</I>

The first time that I heard Snow Patrol’s “Chasing Cars” on the radio, I thought that it was all right, but nothing to really write home about. In some ways, I thought it might have been one of those radio-rock-lite bands that already existed. If I had found out that the song was Coldplay, I would have been a bit surprised, because they seem to have a distinct sound (much like the way you can pinpoint a dead skunk on the highway over any other roadkill), but I would have gladly accepted it being a band such as The Fray.

I’ve heard a total of two Snow Patrol albums prior to this one — Eyes Open and Final Straw — but I’m very willing to admit that of the three I have now heard, Fallen Empires is my favorite. It just seems like such an evolution, a graduation if you will, from that bland radio-rock-lite that has plagued so many other bands in the past and would probably have these guys written off a lot faster if it was a formula that they stuck with.

Therein lies the problem, though: Snow Patrol has somewhat altered their sound from a drab radio-rock band to a somewhat dance-rock band, which will definitely make their fans probably bitch and moan. But what did you really want — another eleven songs of the same old boring, run-together feel that you can already find on the other two albums I’ve heard? I definitely don’t want to hear that sound again from anyone. If Snow Patrol had to make that sound to get to this point, then fine, but no one should be making that sound without some sort of plan.

What happens with the transition of the sound of Snow Patrol is that they now somewhat resemble a band such as The Killers, only not quite as annoying. And I don’t mean that in a necessarily bad way, because as far as radio-rock goes,The Killers aren’t a song I would always change; you have to admit, though, that at some point hearing a song like “Somebody Told Me” on repeat would make you very, very violent.

The thing that always struck me as kind of funny was that “Chasing Cars” would be on the pop radio stations, yet it was a somewhat sad song. It may not have the saddest of lyrics, but it definitely has that downbeat sound to it overall — which is what I found to be true of a lot of the Snow Patrol music that I heard.

What makes Fallen Empires stand out is simply that it has a much more upbeat quality to it. I don’t know how anyone else feels about music or life in general, but I would much rather hear this sort of upbeat, dance-rock music that Snow Patrol has crafted so well on this album, than their boring rock sound that they’ve had in the past.

[Snow Patrol is playing 11/9/12 at Bayou Music Center, along with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds & Jake Bugg.]
(Universal Music Group --; Snow Patrol --; Snow Patrol (Facebook) --; Snow Patrol (Twitter) --
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Review by . Review posted Friday, November 9th, 2012. Filed under Features, Reviews.

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2 Responses to “Snow Patrol, Fallen Empires

  1. RBBR on November 19th, 2012 at 9:04 am

    Did anybody make this show? Not much buildup or publicity. McCartney got all the good karma. IMHO the ‘real’ headlner was Noel Gallagher and his band, not Snow Patrol. Gallagher is a great songwriter/performer but toils in obscurity in the USA.

  2. Jules Hyldahl on December 11th, 2012 at 9:42 am

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