Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Mogwai - Mr Beast (2006)

Mogwai are a band that I had ignored for some time as I stuck with my oh-so-reliable Explosions in the Sky and blinkered myself from the big scary world that can be "Post Rock". The thing about Mogwai that I never realised is, they aren't really that "Post Rock". They don't differ in a "16 minute long feedback epic" (see Boris or Godspeed) kind of way but instead in a way that means they just happen to write more interesting melodies, arrangements and songs than most British bands. Sorry Coldplay. They write the kind of music that conjures up anger about inferior bands, say, the Ting Tings. If Mogwai we're a steak, the Ting Tings would be a party sausage. No substance and supported by a little prick, sorry, I mean stick. Anyway, I have digressed.

Mr Beast is the bands 5th studio release and while not always critically acclaimed, contains enough stand out material to keep a wide eyed new fan like me entertained. The album is a dynamic and exciting listen with each track retaining enough stand alone value to shine individually. My personal favourite, "Acid Food", is a beautifully subtle song with it's steady beat and wondering bass providing the platform for truly stunning guitar work. However simple at times, the guitar harmonies are just perfect.

In contrast, the following track, "Travel is Dangerous", highlights the switches in style that the album takes by providing a brooding 4 minutes which explodes in aggressive fashion before simmering down again. Underneath the melodies and vocals lies a tight and interesting rhythm section which coaxes you through the opening bars and beyond.

The rest of the songs ebb and flow like the two highlighted with particular mention to the piano led opener, "Auto Rock", and the grand closer, "We're no Here". If you have even a bit of time for some intelligent and moving music, try Mr Beast. It will satisfy your hunger!

Mogwai - "Acid Food"