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Of Montreal, The Sunlandic Twins (Album Review)

Ever been driving down an empty highway on a sunny day with the window wide open listening to the radio and for no reason, you smile? Ever feel like you are having the proverbial acid flashback? Combine them and that is Of Montreal. Take a little bit of Eno, a dose of mid-70’s Bowie, the toe-tapping head shaking drumming of Ringo Starr… mix it through the poetry of William Blake mashed with 80’s New Wave and you’ve got The Sunlandic Twins, the 7th album from Kevin Barnes and his post-Elephant 6 band. (And if you buy it on CD you get the bonus e.p. with the first track aptly named “Art Snob Solutions”.) Now let’s be honest. I started off not getting it. This is an opulent album full of layered sounds that move from glamorous silly pop songs into more complex darker and verbose numbers. But after listening a few times, I became immersed. I heard the high-pitched electronic fuzzy beat in the grocery store. I watched “Velvet Goldmine” again. I said things like “May we never go mental, may we always stay gentle” to my boss in meetings. In other words, I got hooked. Morphing into a fan of Of Montreal wasn’t easy. Here’s to reading Baudelaire on an acid-filled sunny day that smells like newly mown grass and sounds like a drum machine. Of Montreal have created a complex and beautiful release that is a highly recommended listen. (Review by:: Erica Goldsmith)