Friday, June 13, 2008

Wolf Parade - At Mount Zoomer

Wolf Parade
At Mount Zoomer
(06.2008, Sub Pop)
Verdict = The latest album to step into the #1 on my list of favorite albums

I was actually late to the first parade of wolves. Heard all the hoopla, sampled a track or two, thought it was funny how everyone kept comparing them to Modest Mouse just because they were then on tour together, but somehow neglected getting the album and subsequently didn’t get into them until long after I was already desperately in love with Sunset Rubdown and a great appreciator of Handsome Furs. It is kind of funny actually. Anyway, Apologies To The Queen Mary was pretty fantastic. The other day I was talking to a friend who was actually pretty worried about the prospect of Wolf Parade’s sophomore album. I guess I can understand the fear of something cherished turning sour, we have all seen it happen right? Well, for some reason I never had those apprehensions. After the last two Sunset Rubdown albums and last years Handsome Furs album I think we might be witnessing a Midas’ touch developing here. Well, I guess there isn’t any real surprise here so I’ll stop my meager attempt at building this thing up and concede mid-review that At Mount Zoomer is spectacular! There, now anyone who wants to go out to recess can do so early. And for those of you sticking around there really isn’t a whole lot more to it I don’t think. Actually, maybe just a little: despite having no apprehensions coming into Mount Zoomer, my initial listens were pretty mediocre at best. I don’t know why this always happens, especially with Krug projects. This is exactly the reason why it took me so long to get into Apologies and also Random Spirit Lover (still #1 of 2007!). The first thing that caught me off guard was Boecker’s chorus on the first song. It is exactly (or at least almost exactly) the same melodic/lyrical contribution he made to the Subtle remix album Yell & Ice. From there things just seemed to progress slowly and the hooks all seemed a little stale for both the Boecker songs and the Krug ones. Well well, of course, there is no way your going to be able to digest this thing in one listen (it took me a good 4 or 5 before I started catching on), but trust me, At Mount Zoomer is a modern rock masterpiece and, might I add, better than Apologies. Yep, I said it. It is better, hands down. I don’t think I would do very well at describing this thing, just rest assured that the guitar lines are mesmerizing and memorable, the hooks are superb and the songs are just amazing, structure, instrumentation and vocals all. If you could only get one album yet this year, At Mount Zoomer should be it.

-Mr. Thistle

Wolf Parade - "Call It A Ritual"

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