1. Alien Days †††††
2. Cool Song No. 2 †††††
3. Mystery Disease †††
4. Introspection †††††
5. Your Life Is A Lie †††
6. A Good Sadness ††††
7. Astro-Mancy ††
8. I Love You Too, Death †††††
9. Plenty Of Girls In The Sea †††
10. An Orphan Of Fortune ††††
MGMT is a psychedelic rock band that was founded at Wesleyan University by Benjamin Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden in 2004. As the years went on, Matthew Asti, James Richardson and Will Berman joined the band as well. They have produced three albums—Oracular Spectacular, Congratulations, and their newest self-titled album: MGMT, releasing September 17, 2013, and so far, it has received pretty high praise.
Before listening, I had high hopes for this album, being as their first album, Oracular Spectacular, was critically acclaimed. Congratulations came as a disappointment to most fans, so I figured that they would definitely amp up their game a little bit for the third one. And boy, they certainly did. They took the amazing techno sound from the first album, combined it with some grunge, and sprinkled a little bit of Depeche Mode influence to create a rather memorable and impressive album. It commands attention in a very subtle way, almost as not to overwhelm people with their amazing instruments and vocals.
MGMT starts off the album with a song appropriately named “Alien Days.” It’s enticing and the lyrics are catchy and beautiful (‘Sometimes the windows combine with the seams in a way/
That twitches on a peak at the place where the spirit was slain’). The next song, “Cool Song No. 2” has a complete different feel to it; almost like Soundgarden and Depeche Mode did a collaboration piece.
One thing that I liked about this album was that it has a lot of variety, ranging from the wonderful grunge-like songs (“Cool Song No. 2” and “Introspection”) to the pop-like Beatles inspired songs (“Plenty Of Girls In the Sea”) to the repetitive, indie songs that many artists are known for (“Your Life Is A Lie”). Admittedly, I felt like the grunge-influenced tracks had more to offer regarding substance and quality, almost as if they were top priority, and some of the other songs, such as “Plenty Of Girls In the Sea,” got thrown off to the side, only to be briefly visited again.
MGMT manages to put you into a state of peaceful solace; making you want to listen to the album until it’s finished. Listening to singles isn’t the same, nor is it as memorable of an experience. There were a couple of songs that felt kind of thrown in there, such as “Mystery Disease” and “Astro-Mancy.” This isn’t to say that they were necessarily bad, however, they could have been a little bit better. In most instances, it’s just a case of not meshing the vocals well with the background music. They’re reminiscent to the second album, Congratulations, and perhaps that’s why they throw off a different, inadequate vibe.
With the exception of those few songs, this is a perfect album to listen to while alone, or perhaps even on a first date. It has that kind of sound that makes you want to grab some blankets and look upon the stars while listening.
Overall, it’s a great album. In most cases, the vocals and the instruments meshed well to create something memorable. It’s a good album to listen to, but the singles aren’t as powerful as the album in its entirety. Some might say it’s ‘overwhelming,’ but I say it’s just right. It would make a great piece in any indie-rock lover’s music collection.
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