Well, I've spent two days with and had two full play-throughs of Manic Street Preachers - Resistance is Futile and my verdict is... That it is severely disappointing.
Now I'm a long time Manics fan who thoroughly enjoyed such divisive albums as Know Your Enemy and Lifeblood, and this is the first time I've ever felt this way. Even the albums I consider very mixed bags like This is my Truth... and Rewind the Film have at least a few stand out tracks that I'll return to, and which on the first playing still made me grin and think "Yes, this is what I like about the Manics", but Resistance is Futile just feels totally forgettable from beginning to end. It feels like they've finally exhausted their musical and lyrical creativity. I know more than a few older fans believe that already happened a long time ago, but I always stubbornly disagreed and was happy for them to explore and experiment with sounds and genres, but I think I must now sullenly shuffle over to join their ranks, with a sad glance back over my shoulder as I go.
So yesterday while listening to some black MIDI on YouTube, I happened upon a sample in one of them I recognised from a song I'd heard a couple of weeks ago in a shop and which I really liked. But since I've lived in the internet rather than the real world since about 2001, I had no idea of the title of the song or who the artist was.
So I searched down the comments, and finally I found someone who had mentioned what the sample was. "Great!", I thought, and went to the artist's official channel to listen to the song again. I wondered what their other songs were like. I started listening to them and realised I had heard several of them before, but since they use different vocalists I had never realised they were by the same artist. I was quite happy to have found a new and different artist I like.