Acts Of Fear And Love Image
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 6 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

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  • Summary: The third full-length release for the British punk duo of Laurie Vincent and Isaac Holman was recorded in Belgium.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. 80
    They're far more adept at widening our eyes than most realise, with a vicious soundtrack to boot. This pair are one of the most exciting and forward-charging rock bands currently active.
  2. 80
    Where 2016’s Take Control--with the exception of the aforementioned Dury collaboration--felt like one big raging scream, Acts of Fear And Love sees the band showing their sensitive side as well.
  3. 80
    Musically, Acts Of Fear And Love is the most accomplished of Slaves’ three albums, switching things up and pulling off new sounds without losing sight of the band’s DNA.
  4. Aug 31, 2018
    80
    Say what you like about the album, it’s impossible to deny it is blazing with confidence and a witty, abrasive humour. What we loved about Slaves when they emerged into the DIY punk scene has returned into the mainstream, and about time too.
  5. Aug 17, 2018
    80
    By keeping enough of the old--and allowing themselves the space to go a little heart-on-sleeve--their tales of 2010s disillusionment are a resounding success.
  6. Q Magazine
    Aug 16, 2018
    60
    They sometimes teeter on the edge of bovver-booted self-parody, but this still counts as a welcome evolution. [Sep 2018, p.117]
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Aug 18, 2018
    9
    When I read that this album showed more of Slaves' soft side I prepared myself for disappointment in a lack of 'punk bangers'! However the 9When I read that this album showed more of Slaves' soft side I prepared myself for disappointment in a lack of 'punk bangers'! However the 9 songs compliment each other very well. Acts Of Fear And Love presents itself as an assertive and cohesive piece of work by two blokes who now fully understand where their place in the market is. They capitalise on this beautifully.

    Vincent's guitar playing is improving nicely (Nirvana Tourettes-esque breakdown at the end of The Lives They Wish They Had, almost Weezerish Photo Opportunity and throwback to Sugar Coated Bitter Truth tunes on Bugs).

    Holman has become more lyrically conscious. It pays big dividends - Metacognition got me hiding away?? Very sexy mate.

    This is easily their best effort to date. Roll on 17th November in Manchester!
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  2. Aug 25, 2018
    8
    Flawed but enjoyable
    Well, this album is definetely a change of pace for Slaves after "Take Control", which felt more like a huge rant and
    Flawed but enjoyable
    Well, this album is definetely a change of pace for Slaves after "Take Control", which felt more like a huge rant and got annoying pretty fast. "Acts of Fear and Love", on the other hand, is more personal, while it still manages to contain some foolishness straight from their first EP.

    The Lives They Wish They Had is a punchy opener with repetitive lyrics and a powerful and catchy riff along them and angry chanting of the band's name at the end- your classic Slaves at their best. However it really goes wild from it - single Cut And Run feels more like cut-down pop-punk relise with this weird flute-like sound from Lory's guitar. It may seem weird for a while, but the catchy chorus will make ou sing this annoying tune for the rest of the day. Bugs is definitely my second favourite one from this LP - it is a banger, which can be compared to Where's Your Car Debbie, but it just manages to give you a bit more - with more alternative rock-sounding hook "Another let down generatiooon" it feels like it could be a ground-breaking single for Slaves as it can attract not only hardcore fans of punk but also some more fastidious fans of rock.

    The fourth song Magnolia feels like a bit of a let down as it could probably better fit their previous LP and the first minute of it sounds exaxtly like Rich Man. These punks manage to redeem themselves with, who could've thought about it, a ballad. Supported by the most beautiful voice on the British rock-scene - Ellie Rowsell from Wolf Alice, Slaves tell a touching story Daddy, which we've never seen on any of their albums. At this point you really start to rate Acts of Fear and Love as their first fully mature album - teenage ranting and rioting has come to an end and now there is a slight philosophical and even reflexive edge to their lyrics. And I definetely dig it.

    Chokehold also was a semi-successful single, released prior, so there's no much to talk about it. Yet again, lyrics make it stand out from their previous singles like Cheer Up London - it's more about some general truths and feelings than about the current state of society at the moment - "I preceded to self-medicate I was shame-faced and I was full of hate". For the first time Slaves take their opportunity to take about themselves rather than everything surrounding them. And talking about opportunities, next song, Photo Opportunity is my favourite one. It feels more like a stadium-rock song, which is definitely not what we wait from Slaves, but I couldn't wait to hear this song at the live show as I can only imagine chills down my spine with people roaring "WHAT SHOULD WE DOOO". Kid you not, I would compare this one to Enter Shikari's Juggernauts - not musically, but in case of mood it creates. Yeah, you don't know what to do, but it still feels like something good is on the horizon.

    Two songs left are Artificial Intelligence and Acts Of Fear And Love. They're ... fine, I guess. They try to experiment more on the second one and I'm not sure if it worked, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. All in all, Acts of Fear and Love is a good album, which had a bit more potential, than it could convert. It has some flaws and weak sports but stays enjoyable to listen in one session, so I guess 7.5/10 is a fair score.
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