As much as I like these guys, they seem to be in a small group of bands that I do really enjoy, but always forget to check out whatever their upcoming album is after its release. I’ll buy into the singles, get on board with the promo, but come crunch time, I’ve forgotten everything I knew. Nightmare customer.
So, let’s do the same dance again. Their newest LP, Rave Tapes, is on the horizon (21st January, for those who aren’t as forgetful as I am), and this single precedes that release in some style. It’s a very slow build, opening in a much less rock-oriented manner than some might expect, and instead relying heavily on dark synth lines, crisp yet light percussion, and a general sense of sombreness mixed with menace. That is, until the second half springs right into life: a bubbly electro melody enters the fray, alongside much more vibrant, lively percussion work, and eventually a hint of grungy guitar can be heard propping up the soundscape in the background. It’s a lovely build that ends up actually becoming quite the head-nodding affair, and as far as I’m aware, seems to be a change of direction for the band- it works for me, and it’s probably going to help me keep better pace with their upcoming album.
Have to say I’m a very big fan of this track, and they’ve certainly done it justice with a unique and oddly addictive video.
Following a solitary, seemingly driven man, the passionate and detailed instrumental plays backdrop to the snowy, industrial scenescapes he traverses throughout, making the video feel more like a journey than a story. Despite seemingly not caring about the character, your interest is piqued by being unable to see his face, and the climax of the video really represents that.
Arguably, the facelessness shows the importance of not needing to have the ‘everyday detail’ in order to appreciate everything else that surrounds it. Why is this significant? Because unlike everyone else (represented by the visible faces of those he walks by), Mogwai don’t have the ‘everyday detail’ of lyrics. Maybe you learn to appreciate everything around it. Audio can be found here.
Second track that I’ve caught from the upcoming Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will, this is another likeable contrast to some of their other work.
I certainly prefer this to Rano Pano, largely due to the more harmonic use of the guitars, which seem to combine the sort of uplifting style found in a radio-friendly hook with an edgier, free-spirited solo vibe. It always amazes me how they create such detailed, atmospheric music without any vocals, and it seems to work your imagination a little more than regular music, as you attempt to piece together a fitting story of your own to layer this track onto. It may sound like ‘over-reviewing’, but it really isn’t: I’ve listened to many instrumentals from a range of genres, and there’s no denying Mogwai are up there with the best when it comes to making them with a little depth and creative quality.
I don’t lay claim to knowing everything about Mogwai, but on Tempest’s recommendation a while back, I found out that they’re a rather talented group. Hence, cut me some slack if this review is a little ‘beginner’.
The track above was atmospheric, electronic and like much of the Mr. Beast album, it was very piano-driven. Rano Pano, from the upcoming album Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will, adopts a much gritter, guitar driven backing which seems to have few similarities musically with the aforementioned track/album. It does however retain a strong sense of atmosphere, replacing the serene hopefulness of Auto Rock with jagged edges that suggest stormy imbalance, which is no mean feat when you don’t utilise vocals. Worth a look for the alternative/rock fans.
Soulja Boy can’t write like me, Michael Jackson can’t write at all like me, Rigid Beave can’t write like me…
I realise its been mass radio silence from me lately, I’d claim I have been busy, but in reality I’ve been drunk and lazy, often both.
So here is a self proclaimed Mega Post of what I’ve been listening to recently. To find out if Soulja Boy can in fact write like me… → Continue Reading