Canada - Full Moon 145 - 07/18/08
At Mount Zoomer
Sub Pop / Tuba!
At Mount Zoomer is Canadian quartet Wolf Parade's second album, following their acclaimed 2005 debut Apologies to the Queen Mary. Dan Boeckner
(vocals, guitar - also a member of Handsome Furs), Spencer Krug (vocals, keyboards, guitar - also a member of Sunset Rubdow, Swan Lake and Frog Eyes), Hadji
Bakara (synthesizer, sound manipulation/experimentation), and Arlen Thompson (drums) create something one might tag progressive indie rock.
The opening "Soldier's Grin" is almost like hearing Television (or Tom Verlaine) back in the days of glory. Strong, proud indie-alternative rock (once)
known as 'new wave'. Ice cool, that is. Wolf Parade sound a bit like fellow Montrealers The Arcade Fire [the basis for At Mount Zoomer sprung out of
long sessions of improvisation in the church owned by The Arcade Fire], but they're somewhat different. And, by judging The Arcade Fire's second album, better
and more interesting. Imagine a mixture of Pulp and Modest Mouse and you'll be on the right track. [In fact Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock helped the band being
signed to the Sub Pop label]. It seems At Mount Zoomer is the result of a democratic process, where Boeckner and Krug has signed 4 songs each and written
the last one together. And, as Krug says when promoting the album (concerning the members' busy lives with side projects and offshoots): "...when we do get to
write songs there isn't really time for our egos to get in the way."
This is an album that really must be heard in its entirety. But, if I was to pick a few songs of recommendation, I'd say "An Animal in Your Care", "Call
It a Ritual", "California Dreamer", "Fine Young Cannibals" plus - not to forget - the epic (almost 11 minute long) closing track "Kissing the Beehive".
At Mount Zoomer is one of the great albums this summer. A chilling and refreshing 9-pack of clever pop for warmer days.
Copyright © 2008 Håvard Oppøyen