• Record Label: Atlantic
  • Release Date: Mar 14, 2006
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 46 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 46
  2. Negative: 3 out of 46

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  1. EdwardM
    May 12, 2007
    10
    Probably the most energetic album I've heard in the last 5 years. It takes a few listens to fully appreciate, but after that you'll be hooked.
  2. Dec 15, 2010
    8
    An album that tries too hard to push its working class motives. That is the only thing that this album suffers from since I am not convinced about how the vocalist sings about the hardships of the British working class but aside from all of this, it's a cleverly layered album with catchy, joyful but strangely dark songs with Clash like guitar and crowd like atmosphere.
  3. Chris
    Mar 18, 2006
    1
    Truly awful. This is rife with cliché, overblown bombast and trite "eclecticism". On top of that, some of the worst lyrics I have heard recently - "Can you feel it? Rocking the city, Ah yeah, straight out of nowhere-ness, Like a fist, can't resist you" - I mean come on, nowhereness!
  4. AlanR
    Jul 25, 2006
    5
    Meh. Radio 4 has a lot more substance.
  5. RossR
    Apr 21, 2006
    1
    I just dont get hard-fi, and not in the i dont know what your singing about stakes but in the what qualities do you have to enhance my life stakes lyrically, musically, to look at , to listen to in interviews there not even mediocre - they really have pulled a rabbit out of a hat with all the interest their getting
  6. MeyaC.
    Mar 24, 2006
    9
    when i first heard feltham is singing out, i thought this was something else. when i listened to the rest of the album, i said wow. they ARE something else. sometimes it can start to get boring after a few listens though...even though, they are better than a lot of other crap out there.
  7. KateB
    Apr 6, 2006
    8
    I listen to this regularly. It's energetic and wild, but very repetitve. Sometimes I can't work out the lyrics, and some of the lyrics were weak, but generally I loved it. Especially 'Tied Up Too Tight', 'Living for the Weekend', 'Middle Eastern Holiday' and 'Better Do Better'.
  8. MusicMaven
    Mar 19, 2006
    9
    Don't make the mistake of lumping these guys in with bands being overhyped by the British press. They are a cut above. Passionate and exciting, they evoke the guttersnipe outlook of the Clash while blending 2-Tone/Madchester dance beats into their loose-limbed rock. I give it an 8.5, but I've rounded up since it's taken so long for them to get recognized (on Metacritic and Don't make the mistake of lumping these guys in with bands being overhyped by the British press. They are a cut above. Passionate and exciting, they evoke the guttersnipe outlook of the Clash while blending 2-Tone/Madchester dance beats into their loose-limbed rock. I give it an 8.5, but I've rounded up since it's taken so long for them to get recognized (on Metacritic and in the U.S.). Expand
  9. DavidA
    Mar 22, 2006
    10
    Best Album I have heard in a while, hasn't been out of my CD player since I got it.
  10. Frank
    Mar 20, 2006
    9
    really good
  11. ancag
    Apr 3, 2006
    10
    best debut album in recent memory, way better than artic monkeys.
  12. CCDeville
    Mar 7, 2007
    9
    I keep playing this album off of my iPod, when I am searching for something to play. Hard to Beat - Tied Up Too Tight - great songs. The lyrics are a bit weak - but who cares.
  13. JJ
    Apr 20, 2007
    9
    Really cool album. Fun and energetic, also very addictive. Can't wait for there 2nd album.
  14. Mike
    Apr 20, 2007
    10
    Awesome debut
  15. MeatBag
    Apr 8, 2007
    10
    Wow!! This album is amazing. The only reason I listened to it was because one of my friends recommended them to me. At first they sounded abit to much like the Clash, who are by the way, my favorite band!! So, by my 4th time through the album, I realized these guys are really, really good. They do a great mixing punk with reggae, dance, jazz and ska which ends making this album a great Wow!! This album is amazing. The only reason I listened to it was because one of my friends recommended them to me. At first they sounded abit to much like the Clash, who are by the way, my favorite band!! So, by my 4th time through the album, I realized these guys are really, really good. They do a great mixing punk with reggae, dance, jazz and ska which ends making this album a great listen. Living for the Weekend, Better Do Better, Unnecessary Trouble, Move On Now are really amazing songs but to me the standout tracks are Middle Eastern Holiday, awsome song. Which reminds me alot of the Police, and Tied Up Too Tight which is without a doubt the best song on the album, is epic, powerful, & uplifting, and one of the best songs in years. Overall, Hard-Fi has tremendous potential, and this album proves it. There a long, long way from reaching the greatness of the Clash but...I wouldn't be surprise if one day they end up making there own "London Calling". Expand
  16. RogerS
    Mar 16, 2006
    10
    London Calling and the Jam, Oasis, the Streets or the Clash are obviously influence. Easy to listen to for people who want to keep it simple. Good lyrics, music and it just sounds good. This CD is easy to listen to for British band fans. The Clash meets the JAM. Get your Union Jack on your back. Oasis move over. The British are coming. Sort of like the Streets but not vulgar. The Jam is London Calling and the Jam, Oasis, the Streets or the Clash are obviously influence. Easy to listen to for people who want to keep it simple. Good lyrics, music and it just sounds good. This CD is easy to listen to for British band fans. The Clash meets the JAM. Get your Union Jack on your back. Oasis move over. The British are coming. Sort of like the Streets but not vulgar. The Jam is probably the best point of reference. Q magazine fans and London sounds for punk, ska, pop sound. Sounds like the Clash and it's about time. Cash Machine and Middle East Holiday are both my favourites. Get this one Expand
  17. juckes
    Mar 17, 2006
    6
    decent enough band, seen them at live at cardiff uni. the album won't change ur life and you'll probably find that after about a dozen listens you can't be arses with it anymore. Hard to beat is worth a listen
  18. MartinJ
    Mar 17, 2006
    8
    This was one of the most expecting british album in 2005. I like it :)
  19. JohnH
    Mar 18, 2006
    10
    A melodic blend of musical influences. I saw 'em live in Tempe in February and they were assured and fun. Try "Stars of CCTV' and "Better Do Better."
  20. Darren
    Mar 18, 2006
    9
    Very listenable. Not earth-shattering, but they show great range and fantastic promise for the future.
  21. mick
    Mar 18, 2006
    8
    Not a world changing album, but I can't stop listening to it. The influences on this album are wide and varied. Daft Punk, Clash, Oasis (Archer can sound surpisingly like Noel), The Specials to name but a few. If you are not British and want to listen to a Decent British band try these, it's up beat a worth a listen
  22. TomH
    Mar 20, 2006
    8
    Lots of energy, very listenable, but they make to much fuss about cash machine, that sn't that good. Living for the weekend and Tied up too tight are better.
  23. JasonR
    Mar 20, 2006
    9
    This album is the dog's bollocks.
  24. ElizabethP
    Mar 21, 2006
    9
    I am appalled by the low reviews! There are no bad songs although there are a few average ones. I don't see how anyone cannot love this album. I haven't heard such stellar hooks in a long time. Hands down "Tied Up Too Tight" is the best song on the album. "Tied Up Too Tight" sounds like something the Arcade Fire would sing, but with more of a darker edge. I HIGHLY recommend this album!
  25. WallyW
    Mar 30, 2006
    10
    With every successive play it grows on you because you realize that what these lads sing about is real. They're not making a band for the sake of making a band, they do it to escape the tedium or the real lives they lead and they do it with such a flare that you can't help but want to listen. Their passion transcends onto every track making this one of the strongest records of 2005.
  26. harryd
    Apr 10, 2006
    5
    i just wanted to mention how ridiculous andrew t's comment is. how could his words, "the Bloc Party would be too much like Hard Fi" be true when Silent Alarm was released first AND i very much doubt hard-fi are trying to copy bloc party or bloc party are trying to copy hard-fi seeing as their LP's were released the same year. and anyway. silent alarm has so much more than stars of cctv.
  27. MorganG
    May 10, 2006
    10
    No wonder this is a hit in Britain! This band rocks and the songs "Cash Machine", "Tied Up Too Tight", and "Feltham is Singing Out" should be enough reasons to get this album.
  28. JC
    Feb 19, 2007
    10
    Best album of 06.
  29. TrekD
    Feb 27, 2007
    10
    Awesome, addictive & catchy. One of the best albums of 06.
  30. Cat
    Apr 30, 2007
    9
    Surprisingly good. One of the better debuts in recent times.
  31. Lucky
    May 4, 2007
    10
    A great combination of punk, reggae, dance, and ska. Definitely worth checking out.
  32. andrewt
    Mar 25, 2006
    8
    A good album,just too much like the Bloc Party, or if you were to buy Hard Fi first, the Bloc Party would be too much like Hard Fi. You should only buy one of the two... "We need the next "big different band"".
  33. AC
    Jan 22, 2007
    10
    Terrific album, plain & simple. Clearly one of the best debuts I've heard in quite sometime and it gets better & better the more you listen to it. Hopefully, with there next album they can repeat the same great formula as they did with this. Best Song on the album: Tied Up Too Tight
  34. Shay
    Apr 24, 2007
    9
    I'm stunned at how good this album is, considering I had no idea who these guys where and if it wasn't for a co-worker of mine (a girl) recommending them to me I would of missed out on this incredible album. Anyway, Buy it! You won't regret it.
  35. May 6, 2013
    7
    Coming along around the same time as Bloc Party, with similar themes, Hard-Fi lack the edge of their mid-noughties Indie Rock counterparts. Stars of CCTV is a reasonably impressive debut but is over produced. At times this production saves some of the more mediocre moments but too often the production serves to make the record sound like a million other things you'll have heard at theComing along around the same time as Bloc Party, with similar themes, Hard-Fi lack the edge of their mid-noughties Indie Rock counterparts. Stars of CCTV is a reasonably impressive debut but is over produced. At times this production saves some of the more mediocre moments but too often the production serves to make the record sound like a million other things you'll have heard at the time. Worth checking out and picking out the handful of decent tracks on there. Expand
  36. Dec 21, 2014
    8
    Much to the surprise of the pub, I attempted ‘Living for the Weekend’ at Karaoke-it was an interesting experience to say the least!
    While I enjoyed it, members of the pub were somewhat bemused at this band who they most probably had never heard before. I feel like this reaction reflects the general reaction to this album; catchy tunes, great lyrics in patches, but, for a British rock band
    Much to the surprise of the pub, I attempted ‘Living for the Weekend’ at Karaoke-it was an interesting experience to say the least!
    While I enjoyed it, members of the pub were somewhat bemused at this band who they most probably had never heard before. I feel like this reaction reflects the general reaction to this album; catchy tunes, great lyrics in patches, but, for a British rock band it lacked the variety of their contemporaries, namely Kasabian and the Arctic Monkeys.
    There are some sumptuous doses of magic in this album. Indeed, the band conjured up a catchy rhythm in ‘Living For the Weekend’ a superb social narrative through the lyrics of ‘Tied Up Too Tight’ and ‘Middle Eastern Holiday’ as well as an catchy guitar riff in ‘Gotta Reason’ (also used in the Goal movie.)
    While some of their efforts appear laboured; ‘Move on Now’ and ‘Unnecessary Trouble’ this album is well worth a decent listen for British/alternative rock fans.
    Expand
Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. A rousing debut. [Aug 2005, p.123]
  2. An album of tight and spiky blue-collar dance rock. [17 Mar 2006, p.114]
  3. "Stars of CCTV" is that rare British import that lives up to the advance billing.