Overblown epic by post-rock Coldplay
It’s hard to consider the debut from Chichester’s Hope Of The States without being distracted by its awful backstory: guitarist James Lawrence committed suicide at the studio as the album was nearing completion. Gorehounds who parse The Lost Riots for signifiers to his demise will struggle to find any, however. Instead, HOTS rely on a blustery concept of emotional expression, clearly drawn from close study of OK Computer and Godspeed You Black Emperor!. It makes a change to find a British band acknowledging Radiohead’s complexity rather than (as with Keane et al) oversimplifying it. But the heart of The Lost Riots is drowned in bombast, and Sam Herlihy’s vocals are nowhere near strong enough to compete with the melodramatic, if prosaic, arrangements they’re pitted against.