some of you are so insufferable and annoyingly fickle about it all, i'd say you're overhtinking it.
i'm not even an optimist for the most part and....
Lift - Compared to pinkpop this song is a bit slower on the BPM, it slowly marches along nicely and the notes have more space to breathe with the guitars noodling along well, it's a very relaxing version and also raw like how nirvana or pavement used to approach recording live takes, the synths and strings climb a lot more than the pinkpop version here, very nice! It wouldn't have been as exciting to just hear a replica of Pinkpop, but there would be no surprise in that whatsoever, yet is still very close to that marker.
Man Of War - They've outdone themselves on this track. Jonny's guitar playing at it's most potent and the fuzz effect is rather impressive and adventurous. Colin funks through a savage bass groove and Ed's intro guitar also features a mellotron by Jonny. The song has clearly been given an orchestral treatment and this is what gives it an authentic James Bond style feel, there is also a rolling piano by Thom with lovely vocals band sections. What really stands out here though is the thunderous big-band drums and Live & Let Die or Let it Be influences on the chorus breakdowns, very nice. The tingly outro is quite magical.
I Promise - It's quite a surprise how well this polishes up in the studio, the synths and acoustic guitar conjure images of the stratosphere. It's very Pumpkins "Infinite Sadness" in vibe and feel, has a timeless quality, a marching joy division-esque marching drums and compelling vocals from Thom, this one's a keeper!