Back in 2006, Klaxons were one of the coolest band's out there, and to this day they retain an uber-trendy reputation. After such acclaim, and a coveted Mercury Music Prize for their debut 'Myths of The Near Future', it's understandable to want to turn against them, but 'Surfing The Void' is actually a cracking album.
When Klaxons first burst onto the scene, their "new rave" combination of indie guitars, art rock noise and 90s influenced electronica was a relatively novel prospect, but with the enormous upsurge of electro-indie outfits in the intervening years, they now seem much less radical. Nonetheless, 'Surfing the Void' is teeming with ravenous guitars, rampant distortion and feedback, contagious rhythms and thumping bass lines, an abrasive production style that is often delightfully gritty, as well as a non-stop pace and pop-friendly melodies that make it innately fun.
Opening track and lead single 'Echoes' is the kind of thing that's sure to die a painful death through inevitable overexposure on the airwaves, but for once the single is far surpassed by the remaining album tracks. Almost everything else here is catchier, bar 'Venusia' which has an invasive hook that borders on irritating. Frenzied crashing noise and raging shouts make the title track and 'Flashover' two of the most dynamic, riveting tracks on offer, also demonstrating a slight shift towards the rock end of the genre spectrum. Elsewhere, the light, bubbly synths of 'Valley Of The Calm Trees' are balanced with strategic drumming, while bouncing offbeat rhythms are easily the most important aspect of 'Twin Flames'.
There are just a couple of tunes that comes across as generic and overly familiar, and, along with the record's rigidly upbeat tone, prevent 'Surfing the Void' from being a truly great record, but there's enough here to keep rock, indie, dance and pop lovers dancing for some years to come.