Monday, March 19, 2007

Pitchfork Reviews Modest Mouse

Pitchfork recommends the new Modest Mouse/Johnny Marr record, but it is by no means a rave. And I have no idea what they mean by this:

Ironically, the most successful track on We Were Dead is the one that pushes hardest against the group's established formula: the almost gaudy single "Dashboard". With Modest Mouse's trademark itchy guitars all but drowned out by brass fanfares and slurring strings, "Dashboard" is the Vegas version of "Float On", and it works as an experiment to see just how far they can push the dissonance of Brock's multi-tracked barking against slick, commercially ambitious surroundings.
Gaudy? Vegas Version? Have our standards for Indie recordings, even those of bands that have jumped to major labels, sunk so low that any competently produced track is deemed "slick" and "commercially ambitious." This is indier-than-thou nonsense.

What I hear in "Dashboard" is Marr making an instant contribution to the band by working his guitar magic: stuttery rhythm guitar and clever fills. Go back and listen to Strangeways, Here We Come or the work he did with Electronic if you're confused.

I'm anticipating a very negative review from Coke Machine Glow based on their review of second single "Parting of the Sensory". How's this for a lead-in:

There are a lot of terrible things to say about We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank.
And then they say a lot of terrible things that I won't repeat here.

I'm still looking forward to hearing the album and am confident it will be the highlight of the Spring.