Heat Dies Down – Kaiser Chiefs

Long suffering SteveForTheDeaf’ers (those afflicted with SfTD’s) may well recall the absurd claim I made in January 2017 that Kaiser Chiefs were Britain’s most undervalued pop resource. Those who do recall this should seek the advice of a physician or at least the Shaman of their tribe immediately. A throw away comment on a blog post in these creaking archives is one thing. Deciding four years later to more than double down on this comment is another. However, to in fact tie myself to the mast of it and make an attempt to cross the seas of a Kaiser Chiefs Theme Week is a truly reckless move in these troubled times. Wa! Ter! Fuu?

Ohhhhhhhh!

This could get messy.

I’m starting with a track from their second album because it is both a brilliant pop rock song and equally utterly on point for every single aspect of what early House Of Kaiser Produce has come to be known for. It would have made a blinding single for a mid level indie guitar band to put out but it remained just ‘an album track’ Heat Dies Down is a jam from Yours Truly, Angry Mob. The bands second long player. The one after the titanic success of the debut album Employment.

The bands signature style was established with those first three big singles. It felt like all of the indie world knew every track on the first album. Not least because festivals in the UK were now big pan-media-format broadcasting events.

Glastonbury, Reading & Leeds etc went from being almost ignored in the last century by the BBC and UK media in general to being viewable on THE RED BUTTON, or webcams, or live on the radio (please do not swear) all at once. Radio One even started upgrading the old roadshow ‘bring ’em out to mime to the latest single’ model to live session stages adjacent to the backstage area at every open air event. And then to staging their own Big Weekends! And KC played the lot. On that first album promo I saw Kaiser Chiefs play dozens of triumphant shows in blazing sunshine between such glorious acts of the era like The Wombats and Lily Allen.

As marketing opportunities went it was a great mix of the old ‘Tour your arse off build your following’ model and the new digital opportunities.

None of that would be worth a jot if they didn’t have the cliched ‘Postman can whistle it’ pop hooks. I Predict A Riot, Everyday I Love You Less And Less and Oh My God were pop gold. Even still, they each needed releasing and re-releasing a couple of times to really cement the bands position*.

So the second album comes along. There’s a big old bubble around the band… But are they still just a landfill indie turn? Would it be a good idea to get politically agitated against the mainstream at this point? To start slagging off the tabloid press in your songs? To talk about street crime, growing up in poverty and to let the drummer sing one? Might be a way to make your appeal more selective. The second albums lead single was Ruby. It went straight to number one in the hit parade and remains one of the bands set closing high points to this day. 2007 man. What a year.

“I can just imagine you and me Running out of steam Going through the motions I have no idea how you know When I dip my toes In other people’s oceans”

Ubiquity is a fickle thing. Follow up single Everything Is Average Nowadays (A far superior representation of the album, but lacking that football terrace chant chorus that can be re-appropriated to be about curry) just about dented the top 20. They released the ‘related to the albums title track’ The Angry Mob (a really complex idea of a single) in attempt to highlight the LP on sale in all good Borders Books Stores!!! To no avail. It didn’t break the 20. Fourth single Loves Not A Competition (But I’m Winning) didn’t chart.

Was that it? Or did the heat just need to die down long enough for the crowd in the field to miss this sunshine band?

Read on… If ye dare (or care)

*We will get back to THAT!

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5 thoughts on “Heat Dies Down – Kaiser Chiefs

  1. I have heard the name of the band but never heard any of their stuff. For some reason I thought they were some sort of Van Morrison-like Celtic traditionalist band! How wrong I was. Looking forward to hearing more about them this week

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