If the video for their new single “Banquet” is any indication, Bloc Party are on the cusp of underground superstardom. Bloc Party marries The Libertines couldn’t-give-a-fuck cool to Franz Ferdinand’s art-damaged pop, and the results are electrifying.
“Banquet,” the band’s first single from their debut LP “Silent Alarm,” is first and foremost a showcase for the talents of drummer Matt Tong and bassist Gordon Moakes. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better sounding rhythm section in any band currently working. Tong and Moakes play off of each other so well you’d swear they were conjoined at the head if the video didn’t show otherwise. Meanwhile, Kele Okereke, the band’s dreadlocked singer/guitarist, has the kind of smoldering vocal delivery that makes Julian Casablancas sound comatose; his new wave axe chops aren’t anything to scoff at either.
At any rate, the video plays like a trailer for one of Godard’s ’60s-era films. It begins with the band’s personnel mugging in black and white whilst colored circles are superimposed over their faces. The scene abruptly switches to a rock club at which Bloc Party is the headlining act. Their audience seems preternaturally subdued, but slowly and surely they succumb to “Banquet”’s throbbing melody and dance the night away. Just as you will moments after pressing “play.”