Top positive review
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Come On, It's Good Stuff
on 17 January 2007
Mogwai has created a fine record in `Come On Die Young'.
The album seems to fall into two distinct parts. The first seven tracks are atmospheric pieces largely notable for their restrained instrumentation and gentle melodic threads. `Waltz for Aidan' is beguilingly beautiful and `Cody' has whispered, dream-like vocals.
After the scratchy piano of ` Oh! How the Dogs Stack Up' the band launch into three lengthy tracks which make up nearly half of the disc's total playing time. Here the feel of the music is looser and more expressive, guitars are louder and freer; classic post-rock territory perhaps.
In my opinion, the CD is most enjoyable where the band create music with strong melody and atmosphere at the same time. My favourite track is `May Nothing But Happiness...' which features a delicate percussion melody interspersed with an increasingly strident guitar motif. The effect is haunting and tremendously atmospheric. The end of the track carries a cleverly sampled repeating automated telephone message; you can almost picture an empty hotel room in the dead of night after some horrible incident
The album's weak side is its length, as at 67 minutes it struggles a bit to maintain the quality. I know from reading other reviews that I am in the minority, but `Christmas Steps' seems to be prime culprit of this. The middle part of the track is impressive with its staccato guitar and percussion, but why the tedious, barely-there intro/outro which adds nothing? The track could easily be trimmed by five minutes.
Don't be too put off, though, this is a very enjoyable CD from a band at the top of their game. Well worth buying if you appreciate cleverly crafted music.