We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank -- .Woah.
So, I was all ready to come on here to write up the new Ted Leo album (I'll be getting to that one in a few day.) But then, out of nowhere, one of my most anticipated albums of the year, Modest Mouse's "We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank" decided to leak onto the interweb. And so, plans change, and I just had to give my 2 cents on this very interesting LP.
Now, here's the thing: When I say that I was highly anticipating MoMo's new album, it doesn't mean that I thought it was gonna be good. Rather, I was almost positive that it was going to be shit. I loathed "Good News," thinking it as big a step backwards as the band could possibly take after "The Moon And Antartica," and the lead single "Dashboard" left me sure that they were about to deliver more of the same take it or leave it tepid pop crap.
And so, imagine my surprise when it turned out that "We Were Dead" not only didn't suck, but was actually a really really awesome listen. This is a big deal.
I'm not saying that this album is perfect (it's still leagues behind the emotion and intensity of MM's early work,) but it is jam packed with track after blood stained track of energy, emotion and ingenuity. Some songs, like the previously mentioned lead single and a few others, tank, but these mistakes are forgivable. For there's plenty of hard-edged gold in here.
Posting sample tracks is going to be a bit difficult, because, at first glance, there are a bunch of highlights. So, I'll try to give you a representative batch.
Modest Mouse - March Into The Sea - Woah, this, the album's lead track, is totally unrelenting. Not many musicians could create the intense build up that occurs in this song's 3 and a half minutes, but Brock and co. pull it off with ease. The last minute and a half of this baby are pure insanity. Love it.
Modest Mouse - Fire It Up - Okay, so a substantial part of the album are pop songs. But, as this song proves, that doesn't have to be a bad things. While the instrumentation isn't necessarily classic Mouse, Brock's lyrics, delivery, and the band's powerful performance prove that MM has the ability to make powerful and unforgettable pop.
Modest Mouse - Parting Of The Sensory - Here's one that only Isaac Brock could write. To tell you the truth, this was the song that surprised me most of all. It's so original and genuine, such an excellent departure from "Good News."
Well, I guess that's all I'll throw up here. This album is definately worth checking out, because, as I said, there are plenty more highlights (including the heartstopping 9 minute opus 'Spitting Venom,' which might just be an early contender for song of the year.)
I can't believe I'm listening to great new Modest Mouse.