- Audio CD (17 July 2000)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Matador
- ASIN: B00004U8EP
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,504 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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The Moon & Antarctic
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Modest Mouse is the new cult. The new sound. The new redefinition of rock. Front man Isaac Brock--a scrawny, drug-ravaged figure from the Northwest of America--has been singing his tales of social and mental isolation, his stories of life from the Edge Cities of America, for years now. Rolling his words round in circular motions, always flurried, always concerned above a background that draws on elements of Joy Division, Radiohead, DJ Shadow--anyone intense with a guitar and a mixing desk; anyone who believes in the cleansing, scouring power of music. On The Moon & Antarctica, guitars bend and warp into the oddest of shapes, while words swim intoxicatingly round the mind. Look at the song titles: "Wild Packs Of Family Dogs", "Paper Thin Walls", "I Came as a Rat"--each one is a minor novella. The proof is here; this American trio is bigger than life itself. --Everett True
Top customer reviews
The distant, rat-a-tatting rock of "3rd Planet" kicks off the enticingly surreal album with lines like "The universe is shaped exactly like the earth if you go/straight long enough you'll end up where you were." This meditation on the universe stretches over the album, with the warm, mildly achy "Gravity Rides Everything," which sounds like the Beatles got slightly depressed.
Things grow darker with the warped, snarling "Different City" and saddening "Perfect Disguise," finally settling on even ground with the folkish "Lives," and the sweeping, magnificent soundscapes of a three-song cycle starting with "Cold Part." Unfortunately, the album is then saddled with "Life Like Weeds" (pretty, but it feels tacked on) and the jarring, raw "What People Are Made Of," which barely seems like the same band.
"Moon and Antarctica" is the sort of music that is like looking through a telescope with an iridescent lens. You not only look at things, but they seem to change in an appealing way. The extra tracks are something of a disappointment, however -- they don't have the dark sparkle of the original album, and there aren't very many extras.
The lyrics have the quality of space poetry, very offbeat and not quite connected with the everyday world. They're a little frightening with their exploration of anger, loneliness and misery, but also quite beautiful in their brushes by the very edges of the universe (try listening to this while looking at fractal pictures), and the evocative wording ("And right after I die the dogs start floating up towards the glowing sky").
Fortunately, Modest Mouse doesn't include just the usual guitar-bass-drums riffs. That would be doing an injustice to the music they put out. Forming parts of the smooth music are violins, electronic stretches and a sort of unique sound that brings to mind "Pink Floyd doing folk." Isaac Brock's thin voice always has a sort of distant quality. It's not really a GOOD voice, but like the Flaming Lips' Wayne Coyne, it's an integral part of the music itself.
Edgy, beautiful, melancholy, dark and spacey, "The Moon and Antarctica" is deserving of loads of listens -- and ten years hasn't dulled its beauty.
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Most recent customer reviews
Would recommend to people who already love Modest Mouse - It's probably not the first album you should listen to from their...Read more