Friday, 10 September 2010
Genre Indie Psychedelic Pop,
Producer Kevin Barnes
Release Date September 14th
You never really know what you're going to get with Of Montreal. Their previous albums are laced with genius and catchy hooks, but overwhelmed by zaniness and almost too much creativity, if such a thing is possible. Their newest release False Priest continues in this fashion.
Most tracks on this album contain an element of brilliance, a great chorus or an infectiously catchy verse, but unfortunately it seems that these transient moments are surrounded by a whole lot of "weird for the sake of weird". For long time fans, this craziness might be what attracts you to the band, but for others I can see it being a major put off.
This is probably best exampled by Like a Tourist, a crazy, non sensical glam rock tune with a wonderfully euphoric chorus. Overall I find the song fairly irritating, but the chorus makes it worth listening to. Much of the rest of the album is equally hit or miss, and it often does not work.
When it does work though it's pretty excellent, and in general the production on this album is much tighter than their past work. One thing I would advise to those who listen to this album is do so with a good pair of headphones to take advantage of the full instrumentalisation. Janelle Monae collaboration Enemy Gene in particular is a real pop gem with a dreamy chorus and arguably the most satisfying tune on the album.
This is immediately followed by another good song in Hydra Fancies, an R&B tinged track which combines effectively with elements of classic rock and funk. Like most songs on this album, the lyrics are gloomier than the deliriously happy melodies would suggest.
Beyoncé's sister Solange lends her vocal talents to the infinitely danceable Sex Karma, a song which probably best sums up the band's penchant for the ridiculous. You may not want to, you may end up hating yourself for it, but this is one of those infectiously catchy pop numbers that simply won't leave your head.
These three tracks may be among the most over the top sugary, upbeat things I've heard all year, but they are undeniably some of the most catchy as well. Indeed this is where a band like Of Montreal succeeds, much in the same spirit as British popster Mika or the Scissor Sisters. If you don't mind taking in some innovative pop with a side of manic crazy then you'll probably enjoy some of this album. If grunge like Oasis is more your thing, then steer clear.