Wednesday, May 21, 2008

New Release: Islands – Arm’s Way

I was really looking forward to Montreal’s sextet, Islands’ sophomore release, Arm’s Way; a judgment shaped solely on hype rather than personal experience. But that was before I discovered that Arm’s Way was in truth, not designed for the faint-hearted.

First few song starters, might leave you with the best of first impressions, as it boasts one of the best track openers I’ve heard thus far. Multitude of musical instruments can be found in ‘The Arm’; layered on top of the other are sweeping strings, catchy indie riffs, flickering keys, punctuated with frontman, Nick Thorburn’s lucid vocals. Lyrics are also well worth giving more attention to on this album; stories are spun around 'bad ass car crash', 'dogs frothing at the mouth', and just 'creepy gnomes'. Venture even deeper into it’s dark, looming, unknown expanses, that’s beyond the fifth track, you’ll find what awaits is a thrilling, if not unsettling, not to mention disorienting, adventure. Further into the record, songs are longer, scarier, and more intense; I find it hard and excruciating to sit through the first minute, let alone the 6 minutes that followed after.

This album may serve as a huge inspiration and pleasure for some, just unfortunately, not for me. I hate to admit it - although painful to say – that for the first time, I might agree with Pitchfork. Even so, these two are definitely the best out of the collection. I might just be too obvious with the song choice, but at this point, I really couldn’t give a shit.

And yes, (in case you were wondering), the illustration actually depicts a vajayjay. A little inappropriate I know, but hey, whatever works.

|mp3| Islands – The Arm
|mp3| Islands – Creeper