“The Past is a Grotesque Animal”…Yes, yes it is.

kevinbarnes

Over the weekend I had finally watched the long awaited of Montreal documentary, The Past is a Grotesque Animal. I was hesitant to view this film for quite some time, as I thought it would destroy my perception of front man and songwriter Kevin Barnes. This proved to be an eye opening experience for sure. The film highlights the band’s career from the very start. Seeing all of the old footage of how the group came to be was rather charming and delightful. The behind the scenes footage was certainly a treat as well. Their vibrancy and quirkiness definitely shined straight from the screen. Every aspect of the band was touched upon. From troubling relationships, to the brilliant artwork and stage performance antics of brother David Barnes and co., it proved to be truly insightful. 

Throughout all of the good times and struggles the band often continued with, the film focused quite a bit on Kevin Barnes’ inner demons. The depression, the anxiety, the need to make ‘good art,’ no matter at what cost. The one problem though, is the need to make ‘good art,’ lead to the departure of longtime and key players Dottie Alexander, James Husband, Bryan Poole (B.P.), alongside Matt Dawson and Davey Pierce respectively.

The thing that struck me most was how easily Barnes removed himself from them to make a complete musical transformation. What came to be one of the most celebrated band of the 00’s, has changed into so many forms that there feels like there is something missing, especially in a live setting. The ever exciting line up during onstage dance parties are something that I, as well as many fans, truly miss. Though change can be good sometimes, The Past is a Grotesque Animal, made Barnes out to have villain tendencies. Whether or not this was the intention, it was an extremely fascinating look into a phenomenal band that has hit home with so many listeners over the past several years. 

I don’t think I will ever stop buying of Montreal records. Kevin’s songs have always struck a chord with me. This certainly gives me a different perspective into the world of of Montreal.

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Of Montreal Appear on Jimmy Fallon with Solange Knowles


Last night everyone’s favorite glittery rockers, Of Montreal, took the stage at “Jimmy Fallon,” performing “Sex Karma,” with sometimes live collaborator and Beyonce’s little sis, Solange. There are a few noticable changes in Of Montreal. For one, there are more band members then they’ve ever had, and longtime drummer James Husband is no longer playing drums with the band as he has left to pursue his solo career. Sad, we know, but we wish him luck. Of Montreal was dressed in all white except for singer Kevin Barnes, but the band, in their theatrical sense, all had matching white painted faces.

The band releases their newest album, False Priest on Polyvinyl, September 14th, and fans are eagerly awaiting to hear the final version. Of Montreal has stepped back a bit from the glittery dance party they’ve been putting on for the past few years and have gone with a 1970’s vibe so they’ve said. This is really noticable in the performance with Solange. “Sex Karma” is up to watch as well is the song that did not appear on “Jimmy Fallon” broadcast last night, the first single “Coquet Coquette.” You can view both down below.

Until the website stops messing with my embedding, watch “Coquet Coquette” HERE.

Secondhand Sunday: Of Montreal ‘Disconnect the Dots’

All of the Of Montreal Lollapalooza and tour dates news this week has put me in the OM spirit. The band has definitely been making waves at the festival this year and all of this talk makes us jealous that we aren’t there! Today’s Secondhand Sunday features the song that started the band’s mega transformation, ‘Disconnect the Dots’.  Sure it had some heads scratching at the time but it also went along with a lot of, well, dancing. Correct is of we’re wrong but it was also the band’s first video and features the artwork of Kevin’s brother, David Barnes who also along side Kevin’s wife, Nina, does all of the artwork for the band. This was the beginning of things to come.

Watch Of Montreal’s ‘Disconnect the Dots’

Of Montreal Upcoming Tour Dates

August 7 — Chicago, IL — Lollapalooza 2009 AA
August 9 — Houston, TX —
Free Press Summer Fest AA
August 29 — San Diego, CA —
Street Scene 2009 AA
September 12 — Morrison, CO —
Monolith Festival 2009 (Red Rocks) AA
September 18 — New York, NY —
Terminal 5 AA

Lollapalooza 2009 Lineup Announced

Ah, remember the days when Lollapalooza got, well to say the least really crappy and they toured with the festival and no one cared to see it anymore? Well since Lollapalooza has stationed itself permanently as a festival in Chicago, the quality of bands have been getting better every year. Thus, making me wish that  Lollapalooza actually was a touring venture again. Just reading the lineup for the three day event makes my head want to explode with excitement. The best thing about the show is the wide range of bands.

Here are some of our top picks for each day of the festival:

Friday:  Of Montreal, Kings of Leon, The Decemberists, Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, Andrew Bird, Crystal Castles, and Kevin Devine.

Saturday: Ezra Furman & The Harpoons, Chairlift, Langhorne Slim, The Living Things, The Constantines, TV on the Radio, Santongold, Lykke Li and Animal Collective.

Sunday:  Sam Roberts Band, Passion Pit, Friendly Fires, Neko Case, Dan Auerbach, Cold War Kids, Vampire Weekend, Cage the Elephant, Bat for Lashes, Dan Deacon, Dearhunter, Ra Ra Riot, Silversun Pickups, and Band of Horses.

The festival takes place at Grant Park in Chicago from August 7th to August 9th. Unless a bag of money falls from the sky there is no possible way for us to be there. Sad. Let us know how it goes kids.

Check out all of the details on the festival’s main site HERE

Of Montreal Get Unplugged (Again) and Cover The Beatles

As much as I adore Of Montreal’s new songs in their original form, there is something about the feeling of Kevin Barnes and BP Helium performing the songs acoustically. We’ve been seeing this for a while from the band, as they are no strangers to these kind of performances. Every song they strip down just seems so beautiful and raw.  Barnes and Helium have stopped by 89.7 WTMD and 90.7 WFUV (New York shoutout, what?) on the current tour to provide us with great versions of ‘Beware Our Nubile Miscreants’, a new song ‘Coquet Coquet’ and a cover of The Beatles ‘I’m So Tired.’  Of Montreal, is there no end to your greatness?

On a side note, I seem somewhat distracted by BP’s new moustache. Who isn’t?

‘Beware Our Nubile Miscreants’

‘Coquet Coquet’

‘I’m So Tired’- Beatles Cover

Jon Brion Remixes Of Montreal

Oh, we just love the sound of that title. Jon Brion who is an incredible songwriter and has penned tracks for such movies as ‘I Heart Huckabees’ comes together with everyone’s favorite indie glam group, Of Montreal. This week, Of Montreal will release the ‘Jon Brion Remix’  EP.

The great thing about this upcoming EP is that Jon Brion doesn’t make all of the band’s songs sound absolutely weird. There is nothing more awkward than a remix that mashes up a song so much that it is barely recognizable. Jon Brion remixes every  Of Montreal song beautifully, and keeps what we love most about the band. Themselves.

Tracklisting

1 “First Time High” (Reconstructionist Remix of “An Eluardian Instance”)
2 “First Time High” (Of Chicago Acoustic Version)
3 “Gallery Piece” (Remix)
4 “Gallery Piece” (Long Version)
5 “Gallery Piece” (Instrumental)

Download Of Montreal’s First Time High (Reconstructionist Remix of An Eluardian Instance)