Strangeland (Deluxe Version)
Label: Universal-Island Records Ltd.
After Perfect Symmetry saw Keane dabble in synth pop, Strangeland returns the group to the romantic balladry that first made them pop stars. This, of course, means they trudge across well-traveled terrain, from Coldplay-like piano rock to a brand of Britpop preciousness that goes all the way back to John Lennon's "Imagine." With help from producer Dan Grech-Marguerat (who previously worked with The Vaccines and Kaiser Chiefs), Keane are focused on streamlining their sound. Even the tracks containing electronic flourishes ("Neon River," "Sovereign Light Café") are tidy and free of clutter.