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Hardcore Will Never Die, And Neither Will Mogwai
on 16 February 2011
This is, to sum it up to it's fullest, a Mogwai album. Listen to it for even the shortest time and you'll recognize the great sound of the band. But there's something else in there. Just because it's a Mogwai album doesn't mean it's a replica of albums of old. THere are subtle tweaks to the system here, and for the most part, they work brilliantly. The almost arcade-like feel to "Mexican Grand Prix" is both interesting and exciting. In a similiar vein, "George Square Thatcher Death Party" (Possibly the best song title of all time?) is another high powered song. At the other end of the spectrum, the opener "White Noise" is a floaty yet expansive song that opens the album perfectly. Incidentally, he production overall is excellent, with subtle touches like the quiet speaking in the former, or the robotic singing in the aforementioned "Mexican Grand Prix".
But really, the best moments here are when Mogwai really bring out the "Mogwai" feel. The finale, "You're Lionel Richie" is a fantastic 8 minutes sweep in the band's truest fashion, showing that even when they stick to their guns the result is just as good, if not better. The first single of Hardcore is "Rano Pano", another standout here. Capitalizing on one key riff and expanding it to a huge blast of sound near the end, it's one of the most exciting songs here.
However, it's not a complete classic. I mean, for the most part the songs are very good, but there's just something slightly missing. Despite some new changes, there's not really much innovation here. Like I said at the beginning, it is, despite everything, still a Mogwai album. And for me, that's a brilliant thing and for most people reading this, it'll be brilliant for them too. But at the same time, it's still not a great thing to hear the first half minute of a song and be able to guess where it's going. It's certainly not a big point and it's not really going to slow your enjoyment of what is, really, a great album. Just bear in mind that it's still not quite a Young Team.
One more thing! Not sure why I forgot to mention this earlier, but the extra disc is absoltuely worth it. The extra song, the 23 minutes long epic "Music For a Forgotten Future", is a beautiful sprawl with strings and great movements. All I can say is that the movie it was originally meant for must have sounded great!
But yes, Hardcore will Never Die, But You Will comes highly recommended for fans of the band, and for newcomers there's lots here to bring you into the band!