Review: Does Doves ‘Kingdom Of Rust’ deliver?


It has finally been released folks. And I have myself a copy. The question is, am I happy or sad? Am I satisfied? Blown away? Disappointed? It’s been four years since the last Doves release, so we’ve all been anxiously anticipating Kingdom Of Rust for quite some time, and when “Jetstream” hit the airwaves, people (myself and KR included) went Dove wild and were excited for a slightly new sound from them.

Kingdom Of Rust does have a new sound. And while it’s obviously still too early to fully judge, I was expecting more from an album “four years later.” So allow me to review how I feel so far – it will be seemingly filled with contradictions because I’m still so mixed: I do enjoy the album. However, save for a few standouts, it did not live up to my expectations (which were probably way too high).

On Kingdom Of Rust, Doves are going for a grander, more psychedelic feel, which works on some songs (“The Greatest Denier,” “Spellbound”), and falters on others (“The Outsiders”). Also, listening to each song consecutively lends itself to extra critique – I found myself thinking, Jimi Goodwin’s vocals sound exactly the same on this track as the previous one… why doesn’t he mix it up a bit? That’s not to say the background aura of the songs doesn’t change – such as on “10:03,” which has some cool, dark percussion in the last minute or so. So background = check, vocals = not so much.

As I mentioned earlier though, I do enjoy the album full-through, I’m just critiquing it as best I can after such hot anticipation. Is it going to top my year-end albums? Probably not. Is it worth your money? Yes – the Doves are much better than most stuff out there.

Here are three Kingdom Of Rust songs currently on repeat. If you have yet to purchase the album, buy it here. All three of these songs are standouts.

Doves – “The Greatest Denier” [MP3]

Doves – “Spellbound” [MP3]

Doves – “Jetstream” [MP3]

What do you think of Kingdom Of Rust? All opinions are appreciated and respected.

5 comments to Review: Does Doves ‘Kingdom Of Rust’ deliver?

  • I am surprised there are still people anxiously waiting for the next Doves release! They had 2 great cds (the first and the second!), or should I say in fact 1 (the last broadcast, which is aptly named when you think about it). It has been very boring ever since. In particular the voice as you point out is “more of the same” with this sort of unbearable moaning touch that makes interesting songs such as “The greatest denier” a torture to listen to! There goes my fear about this band.

    Lee Reply:

    vlad, thanks for the comment

    you mirror much of my thoughts re: this album.

  • i disagree with the first comment. i liked the last album a great deal. “black and white town” was fantastic. thanks for the tunes.

    Lee Reply:

    np, pangea. I have been a fan of much of their previous work as well. Though I do think Goodwin’s voice gets to be a bit abrasive sometimes, as vlad inferred in his comment.

  • Lee, thanks for the kind words about my review. As you said, it’s extremely hard not to contradict yourself with this CD. There are some really great tracks, but it’s not one of those albums where you enjoy every song.