Update: Our review of 'Further/Deeper'
If this post's heated comment discussion is any indication, opinion amongst The Church's passionate fanbase remains very much divided on the new musical territory being explored by the iconic band since the departure of long-time member Marty Willson-Piper. Judging solely off the handful of initial preview tracks, many fans have expressed their reservations of The Church's adaption for their 25th album, Further/Deeper, without what many would consider an essential ingredient.
"Do you think you could please me?" bluntly states frontman Steve Kilbey on one of the album's standout tracks, "Delirious", addressing this difficult relationship between creator and critics and echoing some of his own responding comments from that thread.
It's a defensive stance that's reinforced throughout the record, with Further/Deeper clearly stating it's evolved focus. It's an album with a distinctly unified sound, most likely a product of it's environment, with the album created over just eight days in late 2013. New guitarist and former-Powderfinger member, Ian Haug, brings his own style into the mix, yet it's the overall arrangements that display the most prominent transformation, with denser compositions, flashes of grandeur and a distinct wide-sweeping sonic quality that frequently pushes Kilbey's vocals deeper into the mix in an almost domineeringly manner.
It's a record that even without it's surrounding pretence would be scrutinised by the long-serving fans, inevitably held up against the group's vast back catalogue of achievements. Make up your own mind, with the album available to stream in full below from today, ahead of it's official release this Friday, October 17. Pre-orders are also available now via the band's website.
This stream has now been removed.