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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Of Montreal - - The Sunlandic Twins, 3 Jun 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: The Sunlandic Twins (Audio CD)
After 10 albums, Kevin Barnes still has plenty to say and, on the evidence of 'Sunlandic Twins', plenty worth hearing. Of Montreal is pretty much Kevin's solo project these days; he writes, plays and produces pretty much everything here and his magpie mind has amassed a trove of bright ideas.
The album is full of yin and yang. It retains his continuing 60s fascination but the dance/world music influences are stronger than ever, resulting in a record inspired by, but not in thrall to, the past and just as greedily eating up the future. As on 'Satanic Panic in the Attic', you hear traces of Fela Kuti and Os Mutantes, especially on 'I Was Never Young', while cheesy dance music gets an intelligent advocate for once. 'So Begins Our Alabee', the one reference to his new daughter I can spot (presumably these songs were conceived before she was), has a lovely tinny early 80s electro-pop beat while 'This Party's Crashing Us' combines programmed drums, Parliament-style wah wah guitars and multitracked vocals to make the perfect monster indie pop song you can dance to.
There's black humour and lightly-sketched political warnings, from the Bunuel-esque 'Art Snobs Solution', full of orchestrated pop, to 'Forecast Fascist Future' that sounds as if George Orwell dictated '1984' at the head of a beat combo. The latter song has some of the best of his wordplay, as he describes how "boredom murders the heart of our age/ as sanguinary creeps take the stage". Further variety comes in the pastoral elegy of dreamy electronica that is 'I Was A Landscape In Your Dream', while 'October is Eternal' sound likes an operatic soundtrack to an epic movie.
The old Beatles and Kinks influences are as great as ever ('The Actor's Opprobrium' is pure Merseybeat) while all four tracks on the bonus CD are a riot of melodic colour, the pick of which ('Keep Sending Me Black Fireworks') combines Nina Barnes' sweet and warm voice with jangly piano and Kevin's happy harmonies.
Brilliantly arranged, boundary stretching and full of complex ideas thrillingly realised, in twenty years' time this will be acclaimed a masterpiece. Don't wait for posterity's reassurance; this is one of the great albums of this and many a year.
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The Sunlandic Twins
The Sunlandic Twins by of Montreal (Audio CD - 2005)
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