6th album, a nautically themed one, of "indie" rock from these Pacific Northwest stalwarts. This album sees the addition of Johnny Marr (the Smiths) to the band. Marrdest Mouse--get it? Whether this shows obvious signs of Marr's influence or not, I'll leave up to the real Smiths' fans. James Mercer of the Shins also offers backup vocals on a number of songs. For simplicity, I call Isaac Brock's energetic sing-shouting style "yelping" below. This debuted at #1 on the Billboard album charts and it's on a major, so it's not indie after all, but that doesn't preclude it from being good.
-Adrian FCC: 4, 5, 9, 12, 13
My picks: 1, 2, 5(FCC), 10, 11, 12(FCC)
1. 6/8 accordion lilt goes quickly into a full med-slow rocker with signature Brock yelp. Alternates between subdued and full-on.
2. the single. catchy and upbeat.
3. med-slow and subdued. starts with bass and drums (and drum programming), then one of those MM single-note guitar lines. group singing before it goes fully into the song.
4. FCC ("shit" at 2:55 remaining) med-fast. a few guitar parts and drums under the Brock yelping. melodic chorus. subdued breakdown 3/4 the way through.
5. FCC (2x "fuck", 1x "shithead") starts slow and subdued. dark. starts with stomping, clapping and acoustic guitar. cello adds later. gets into mandolin+violin+vocal+stomping+clapping frenzy at the end
6. med-slow and subdued. pretty soft.
7. med-fast. lots o guitars. has some 80s-sounding background vocals by Mercer.
8. walking tempo (strutting tempo?). strange horn sound at the beginning, then goes into a multiple-guitar yelp fest.
9. FCC ("shit" w/ 3:10 remaining) starts with bass, random percussion and far-off vocals before going into a fuller arrangement. again, this song is for strutting
10. slow. starts subdued with guitars and keyboards and soft vocals. builds in almost post-rocky way
11. mid-tempo. driven by a classic modest mouse guitar line. other guitars and percussion adds in. breakdown with reverbed guitar and vocals.
12. FCC ("fucked up at 6:23 remaining) long (8:29) acoustic guitar and voice with flirtations of electric guitar and percussion until 1:30 in when it because full band. break down then it becomes positively post-rocky for the last half.
13. FCC("fucked up" at 1:17 remaining) med-tempo. mostly subdued with slight outbursts with swirling and repeated guitar riffs
14. med-fast with plenty of guitars and yelping.