of Montreal- Paralytic Stalks
By: Alex Peacock
Paralytic Stalks, of Montreal’s newest album that was released February 7, euphorically clashes with the familiar style and flare that the previous works showcase so well. Of Montreal’s musical evolution as a psychedelic pop band has brought them to their current stage of music, which is the beginning to fuse into more diverse ranges of sound. Familiar synthesizers, guitars and drums are used, but new addition Zac Colwell brings in his flute and horn playing talent into the album, very much diversifying the accustomed sounds that of Montreal is known for.
As with the addition of new instruments comes a whole new range in pace and boisterousness the songs take on. For example, “Wintered Debts” softly and slowly stays in the normal template for the band at some points, while at others takes off, and becomes the booming arrangement of music that of Montreal has honed to make their own style. Other songs feature these variations in mood, offering both calamity and relaxation all in one song. “Exorcismic Breeding Knife” also combines these two emotions randomly, having one flare brightly at one point, to then be outshined by another, and so on.
With these changing emotions came problems to me at some points. When I was just yearning for consistency, these and other songs continually change speed, the sounds used, and tone. The amount of sounds going on at one time was even too much for me at their peaks, with the synthesizer tones being too abrasive in a lot of transitions which made the experience of the album less enjoyable.
Overall, the album isn’t too over-bearing all the time, and really does feature some great additions to the library of of Montreal tunes. “We Will Commit Wolf Murder” is a great example of this, by containing great falsetto choir layering, and equally containing sections for a wide variety of instruments to adequately demonstrate how talented this band really is.