While they don’t have much of any mainstream presence in the U.S., Poets of the Fall have made quite a splash in the European rock scene over the past decade, with their previous albums getting a very solid amount of radio play. The band was founded in 2003 in Helsinki, Finland. They gathered a devoted following quite quickly, mostly due to their interesting mixture of classic rock and roll and more modern pop-rock bands, like Coldplay. Their newest work, “Jealous Gods,” and does not disappoint.
The album opens with the single “Daze,” an upbeat and catchy song that highlights vocalist Marko Saaresto’s immense vocal talents. In the chorus he shifts from his usual soothing baritone to a soaring falsetto. The track is really one of the highlights of the album, and is incredibly radio-friendly due to its catchy chorus and energetic sound.
Some of the other strongest tracks are “Rebirth,” “Hounds to Hamartia,” and the surprising instrumental track “Rogue.” “Rebirth” is a dark love song full of atmospheric instrumentals and Saaresto’s deep, melancholy vocals. It doesn’t show off the band’s rock skills as well as “Daze,” but is absolutely one of the album’s standouts.
“Hounds to Hamartia” is a more traditional PotF song, with soothing yet catchy guitar rhythms and simple but satisfying drum beats. It also follows their usual pattern of a slower verse, and an upbeat, catchy chorus.
Finally, “Rogue” is a real surprise, because the band hasn’t really dabbled in purely instrumental music much at all. It is, however, a resounding success, proving to be an epic piece, full of soaring synths and truly impressive guitar work.
The downside to this album is that other than those four songs, the rest of the album really just feels like filler. “Daze,” “Rebirth,” “Hounds to Hamartia,” and “Rogue” are all brilliant, and because of that brilliance the rest of it just falls flat. The only other song on the album that really stands out is “Choice Millionaire,” and not for a good reason. It’s a very odd song, involving spoken verses that feel horribly out of place. The chorus is enjoyable, but the verses are just off-putting.
“Jealous Gods” is an enjoyable album, with some truly brilliant songs on it, but is has some faults. Many of the songs aren’t horribly impressive, which isn’t to say that they’re terrible, just that they’re not great. However, if you are looking for a solid Rock album, “Jealous Gods” will absolutely fit the bill. If you wish to hear the songs live though, you’re out of luck, as they don’t currently have a US tour planned. I would give the album a four out of five.