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Indie, Noise, Shoegaze… Music

Of Montreal: Lousy with Sylvianbriar (Polyvinyl Records, 2013)


La tradicional explosión creativa de los de Athens dio como resultado en 2013 el que hasta la fecha es el decimosegundo disco de Of Montreal: Lousy with Sylvianbriar. Seguro que en breve tendrá sucesor y seguro que será igual de inspirado y revelador como éste.
Elementos diversos nos encontramos en él: Neo-Folk, Blues, algo de Soul, algo de escenificación operística, pero sobre todo mucho de Pop, con mayúsculas, de ese que factura discos con ese tono de disco conceptual, de pequeña obra con principio y final, ese tono a lo Olivia Tremor Control que tanto echamos de menos.

Especially after Stalks, Lousy is bracing. It’s arguably the best—not to mention the funniest, prickliest, most purple, and least fastidious—Of Montreal album since Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? Barnes sounds more focused and straightforward, perhaps newly aware that his listeners won’t follow him just anywhere. The songs here boast clearly defined choruses and verses and bridges, even if his digressions within melodies lend the music an intriguing volatility.  If he was channeling Prince and Faust and the fictional glam-funk avatar Georgie Fruit on previous records, on Lousy with Sylvianbriar his spirit guides seem to be Donovan and Dylan. The album’s softer moments tweak the former’s pastoral folk and spiritually declarative lyrics, and when this iteration of the group cuts loose, they sound like they’re racing down Highway 61 en route to Plato’s Retreat. On “Belle Glade Missionaries” Barnes adopts Dylan’s long-winded phrasing, rushed delivery, and heavily coded lyricism, but the performance never descends into impersonation.
Dylan has been an evergreen influence on generations of musicians, but Barnes seems intent on puncturing the Bob mythos a bit, which means Lousy is never lousy with hero worship. Is that album cover a cheeky allusion to Bob’s infamous motorcycle accident, after which he retreated from public scrutiny for a few years? “Hegira Émigré” could be a sly parody of Dylanophilia, suggesting how ill-suited the old forms of protest music are to the post-Occupy world: “My baby’s meditating to stop the war, but I’ve got myself a rifle ‘cause I ain’t gonna get walked on anymore,” Barnes sings, as the band stomps around like the Band ca. ’66.
Barnes’ songwriting has always thrived on petty feuds and lacerated relationships, stoking low-level, long-simmering interpersonal conflicts for inspiration. At his best, he teases out the tensile connections between humans, giving voice to the darker thoughts and casual prejudices that cloud every mind. Witness “Colossus” : “Your mother hung herself in the National Theater, when she was four months pregnant with your sister,” Barnes sings, setting the scene for someone else’s grim family drama. “Maybe your family, they are just losers.” The statement reads as harsh, but its poignant and commiserative, somehow, heightened by the band’s curiously delicate arrangement. It’s the most empathy Barnes has mustered in ages, even if the sentiment is barbed.
Barnes writes in in his own language, a peculiar and personal mix of purple prose poetry, exhausting academic-speak, prescription-medication warnings, and plainspoken pronouncement. So perhaps Dylan is an even more apt model for Barnes than Prince ever was. Like Dylan, he asks you to decode, to dissect, to discuss. Also like Dylan, Barnes seems playfully aware that his lyrics are Gordian knots, impossible for even the most devoted Of Montreal fan (including, possibly, himself) to untangle completely. And yet there are moments of clarity on Lousy with Sylvianbriar that prove Barnes is both his own harshest judge and most lenient jury. Or, as he sings on “Triumph of Disintegration”: “I had to make myself a monster just to feel something ugly enough to be true” (Pitchfork)

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19 marzo, 2014 Posted by | Of Montreal | Deja un comentario

of Montreal: Fugitive air (Single, 2013)

“Inspired by Dylanthe StonesNeil Young, and more, Lousy with Sylvianbriar was created with a new songwriting approach, a different recording method, and a fresh group of musicians.
Recorded live to a 24-track tape machine during a frenetic three week period in Kevin Barnes’ home studio, Lousy with Sylvianbriar is a throwback to early of Montrealalbums and contains callbacks of an even earlier time.
“I knew I wanted the process to be more in line with the way people used to make albums in the late 60s and early 70s,” reveals Barnes. 
“I wanted to work fast and to maintain a high level of spontaneity and immediacy. I wanted the songs to be more lyric-driven, and for the instrumental arrangements to be understated and uncluttered” (Press)

Facebook / Polyvinil Records

30 julio, 2013 Posted by | Of Montreal | Deja un comentario

Of Montreal: Skeletal lamping (2008), Polyvinyl


Avance del que será nuevo trabajo, noveno de estudio, de la banda de Athens. Mezcla de diversos elementos, disco, pop, algo de psicodelia blanda, minimalismo, petardeo sin más…

El disco estará en la calle a principios de octubre, y sobre el mismo, Kevin Barnes, vocalista, dijo en el blog de la banda:
“Es posible ver a este álbum como una larga composición, con gran cantidad de diferentes movimientos, o solamente como una colección de canciones pop. Quería hacer un álbum que fuera impredecible y, en ocasiones, sorprendente, pero siempre tarareable y pegajoso”.
Actuación en Barcelona el próximo 17 de octubre, Razzmatazz.
descargar el álbum pinchando en su portada.

26 agosto, 2008 Posted by | Of Montreal | Deja un comentario


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