Music / Editors

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The band's current line-up. From left to right: Ed Lay, Justin Lockey, Tom Smith, Russell Leetch, Elliot Williams

Editors are an English rock band, formed in 2002 by lead singer Tom Smith. Their line-up currently consists of Smith on vocals, Justin Lockey on lead guitar, Elliott Williams on keyboard and rhythm guitar, Russell Leetch on bass and Edward Lay on drums. Former lead guitarist Chris Urbanowicz left the band after the release of their third album, 2009's In This Light and on This Evening, due to creative differences. Earlier on, their original drummer, Geraint Owen, left while the band was still known as The Pride. Before their current name, they've also been known as Pilot and Snowfield.

Their main musical influences include Joy Division, Echo & the Bunnymen, R.E.M., Elbow, The Strokes and The Walkmen. They have been most often compared to the American indie rock band Interpol, due to their similar sound, influences and vocal styles. The sound on their first album, 2005's The Back Room, has best been described as "dark disco" by a reviewer for NME, due to the album's combination of dance-like drum patterns, various synths and catchy guitar licks. They would continue to expand on this sound with their 2007 follow-up, An End Has a Start, creating a "bigger" sound through the method of adding more layers and textures to the songs.

The band would go on to release In This Light and On This Evening in 2009, in which the band switched out their original post-punk-meets-disco sound for a "new, rawer sound" closer to New Wave Music. Four years later, the band released their first album without Chris Urbanowicz, 2013's The Weight of Your Love, where the band would make a slight return to doing post-punk whilst still excluding the disco elements, in addition to Tom Smith singing the tracks in a higher tenor range rather than a baritone one. In Dream returns to the more electronic-heavy sound of In This Light and On This Evening, but brings more guitars into the mix than that album did.

Two of the band's several albums have gone platinum, with all four accumulating several million in combined sales. Two singles off The Back Room ("Munich" and "Blood") became major hits and the album itself received a Mercury Prize nomination. An End Has a Start and In This Light and on This Evening have both reached #1 on the UK Album charts, with the former earned the band a Brit Awards nomination for Best British Band. In addition to strong chart success, the band has managed to sell out all their tours in the past and have headlined numerous festivals, even touring with Muse at one point.

Studio albums:

Open your arms and welcome tropes into your town:

  • Album Title Drop: "Camera."
    If we run, they'll look in the back room
    Where we hide all of our feelings
    • "The Weight."
    I'm a man holding the weight of your love
    But without it my strength just isn't enough
  • Animated Music Video: "What is This Thing Called Love?".
  • Anti-Love Song: "You Don't Know Love".
    You don't know love like you used to
    You don't feel love like you did before
  • Badass Baritone: Tom Smith up until The Weight of Your Love, where he more commonly utilizes a tenor range.
  • Badass Beard: Justin Lockey.
  • Badass Mustache: Tom has sported one in more recent years.
  • Bonus Material: The original UK release of The Back Room contains a six-track bonus disc named Cuttings, consisting of b-sides and a redo of "Forest Fire", a song they wrote when they were still known as The Pride.
  • Broken Record: "YOU DON'T NEED THIS DISEASE YOU DON'T YOU DON'T NEED THIS DISEASE YOU DON'T YOU DON'T NEED THIS DISEASE YOU DON'T YOU DON'T NEED THIS DISEASE YOU DON'T"
  • Call-Back: The lyric "Push a hand up to the sky" from "Push Your Head Towards the Air" draws back to a similar lyric, "I push my hands up to the sky", from "The Racing Rats".
  • Cover Version: They included a cover of Stereolab's "French Disko" as a bonus track on the iTunes release of The Back Room. They have also covered "Orange Crush" by R.E.M. as a b-side to "Blood".
  • Epic Rocking: "Open Your Arms", "Bricks & Mortar" and "This House is Full of Noise" all exceed six minutes.
  • Fading into the Next Song: "Open Your Arms" into "Distance" at the end of The Back Room.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: "Distance".
    I'm sure you're passing the test
    I wish you all the best
  • Large Ham: What most of Tom Smith's vocal deliveries consists of.
  • Lonely Piano Piece: "Well Worn Hand".
  • Lyrical Dissonance: "Smokers Outside the Hospital Doors", an uplifting-sounding arena-rock tune about running away from everything you know.
    • Subverted by "Camera", which has pleasant-sounding verses, and then a more aggressive chorus.
  • Madness Mantra: "Bullets" takes this Up to Eleven with exactly 36 total repetitions of the lyric "You don't need this disease you don't".
    • There's also the anxious repeating of "Open your arms and welcome" near the end of "Open Your Arms".
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Most of The Back Room is a 4, lowering down to a 3 with "Fall" and "Camera", and then a 2 with "Distance". An End Has a Start ranges from 4 to 5, coming down to a 2 with "Spiders" and even a 1 with "Push Your Head Towards the Air" and "Well Worn Hand". Due to a lightening in sound, In This Light and The Weight of Your Love are a solid 2 to 3.
  • New Sound Album: In This Light and on This Evening showcased a change from their original post-punk sound to synth-pop, with absolutely no guitar parts being used. The Weight of Your Love was also this to an extent. There are certainly post-punk elements, though the overall sound is a lot closer to general alternative rock.
  • New Wave Music: Only on In This Light.
  • Non-Appearing Title: "Munich", "Fall" and "Bullets" from The Back Room; "The Big Exit", "The Boxer", and "Walk the Fleet Road" from In This Light. That album's "Eat Raw Meat = Blood Drool" is somewhat of a subversion, as the song does mention eating raw meat and blood drool, though the title as a whole is never quoted word-for-word.
  • Obsession Song: "Fall", "Open Your Arms", "An End Has a Start", "Bones".
  • Overcrank: The music video for "The Racing Rats" features slow-motion shots of the band members playing in a cul-de-sac.
  • Post-Punk: Up until their sound change in In This Light.
  • Spiritual Successor: Much like Interpol, they were often considered this to Joy Division before In This Light, with at least one person hailing Tom Smith as "the new Ian Curtis".
    • The band Two Door Cinema Club could potentially be this to Editors themselves, considering their similar styles.
  • Subdued Section: "An End Has a Start".
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: "Distance" is notably quieter than the rest of the songs on The Back Room, using a drum machine instead of actual drums, running at a slower tempo than the rest of the tracks and featuring a softer guitar riff and vocal melody.
    • An End Has a Start also ends with a Lonely Piano Piece, "Well Worn Hand".
    • The instrumentals on "Walk the Fleet Road", the last track on In This Light, are barely even audible until two minutes in.
  • Title Track: The one off An End Has a Start has become one of their most popular songs.
    • In This Light and on This Evening has one as its opener.
  • We Do Not Know Each Other: "The Racing Rats".
    Let's pretend we never met, let's pretend we're on our own
    We live different lives until our cover's blown
  • Word Salad Lyrics: Most prominent on The Back Room, where almost every song's lyrics sound like philosophical phrases lined up together. An excerpt from "All Sparks":
    You're answering questions that have not yet been asked
    All sparks will burn out in the end
    You burn like a bouncing cigarette on the road
    All sparks will burn out in the end
  • Word Salad Title: "Fingers in the Factories" and "Eat Raw Meat = Blood Drool".
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