Bloc Party are back with a new line-up and the key member, Kele Okereke, occupying a sort of Mark E Smith-esque pivot point for members to join and fall away from the band. Fear not, the same sound remains mostly, taking the electro-rock that they toyed with on Intimacy and Four and playing with it some more, more like a guitar-orientated Kele solo album, of which he’s put out a few now. The fact remains that the electronic sound just isn’t as good as early Bloc Party. Experimentalism should be rewarded, and that was rewarded when the likes of ‘Flux’ surprised on Weekend In The City, but here it isn’t aiming for the charts like ‘Flux’ was, it just appears as an obscenely-squelchy synth that plods across the track.
The chorus itself could have landed on A Weekend In The City or Four, a bit like the superior ‘Ratchet’. It’s one of the redeeming features of the track as the synth dies out and it sounds a bit less like someone playing on GarageBand for four minutes. The same stands for the atmospheric intro which is ripped to pieces by that synth making its grand entrance. For anyone that loved Bloc Party trying to change up their sound, ‘The Love Within’ might be the welcome arms of an old friend, but for people who remembered the heart-wrenching ‘This Modern Love’ or the political ‘Hunting For Witches’, ‘The Love Within’ is the nail in the coffin of all that is good about Bloc Party.