Having spent 7 years waiting for the fourth dEUS LP, the fact that they’ve produced two further records in the 6 years since represents something of an acceleration of productivity. 2008’s ‘Vantage Point’ though was something of a disappointment and suggested that a bit more time could profitably have been spent on the record.

Three years on and there’s (already) another dEUS LP – ‘Keep Me Close’. Is it another case of too little too soon?

First single, ‘Constant Now’ gave grounds for cautious optimism. Whilst firmly rooted in the AOR dEUS of recent years, it had enough of an edge to keep me interested.

Then when the LP finally arrived, the lead and title track also instantly created a favourable impression. Although cut from similar cloth the associated orchestration lends the song an imposing grandeur.

But on the first couple of plays there were few of the other songs which jumped out, other than epic closer ‘Easy’. And even ‘Keep Me Close’ and ‘Constant Now’ seemed to pale against the band’s illustrious past.

Repeated listens however cast the LP in a much better light. The reality is that, despite the big production, dEUS are a more subtle band now than the one that recorded ‘Suds and Soda’ all those years ago.

‘Dark Sets In’ and ‘Ghost’ offer welcome shots of adrenaline and only ‘The End of Romance’ and to a lesser extent ‘The Final Blast’ disappoint being too reminiscent of the unmemorable tunes on ‘Vantage Point’.

‘Keep Me Close’ then is pretty decent record. But in lots of ways it’s comparable to late period R.E.M. – enjoyable enough for what it is but, not something which is going to stand comparison with their best records.

The video for the single:

Buy the LP here.

dEUS continue to tour in support of the LP in Europe through October, November and December.

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