Der NME vergibt 8/10 Punkten...
On 'Always Returning', their fourth album, they've delivered yet again. 'Bless The Painter', which spits at a social-media generation obsessed with photographing artworks for their news feeds rather than to admire their beauty, sets a glacial tempo. Centrepiece 'A Million Voices' is a driving, motorik synth masterpiece and 'Searched For Answers' shows subtle restraint, but the album slips up when it get too blissed out for its own good ('Drive Your Car'). Even so, it's about time this lot got the credit they deserve.
Impressive opener ‘Bless the Painter’, a patchwork of oscillating piano notes, close harmonies and folk inflected guitar along with ‘Fight or Flight’ amply demonstrate Engineers’ turn towards dream-pop pastures is a demonstrable success. ‘It Rings So True’, a dusky folk tune underscored by a billowing cloud of ambient synths and acoustic arpeggio is a highlight, as is ‘Smiling Back’ which shares the same swooning melodicism as purple-patch era Slowdive, before breaking off into a slide guitar solo like something from All Things Must Pass.
The driving synthpop/Krautrock of the excellent 'A Million Voices' motoring along on a persistent bass guitar figure is the closest thing here to all-out pop and while the instrumental drift of ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ seems to deliberately invite comparison with Lost in Translation soundtrack-era Air a tad too much, the track is redeemed by the effortless grace of its 3:43 running time.
A resonating success in repositioning themselves, Always Returning richly deserves to raise Engineers’ profile beyond the critical cognoscenti.