Thursday, October 27, 2011

Olivia Tremor Control- Dusk at Cubist Castle (1996)

To me, Olivia Tremor Control, and the two albums they have put out, are a rare musical gem hidden from so many people that finding someone who knows about it and loves it (as most are wont to do) is just as rare a specimen as their musical output is. The only fault in their amazing pop music is that certain spans of the album devolve into exceedingly psychedelic experimental tracks, more noticeable on their 2nd album Black Foliage, but certainly undermining a fair amount of their overall work. But that is just hindsight speaking; the overall flow of both their albums fit in these extended outbursts between track upon track of solid, Beatles and Beach Boys- influenced pop rock that dominates anything else currently pursuing this style of music.

That very very small negative aside, Dusk at Cubist Castle is an album to rival the likes of Sgt. Peppers in catchy tunes combined with psychedelic experimentation. A majority of the album, most notably the first half, flows wonderfully with tune after tune of nostalgic, classic pop realization, with hints of the madness to come in the later sections. And even through those sections of experimentation, moments of vocal harmony and melodic dedication shine through to let you know something cohesive is certain to take center stage, as Gravity Car does at the very tail end of Cubist Castle. Tracks like Jumping Fences really stand out though, that particular song serving as track 3 in the amazing run of songs in the first half of the album. It is just so fucking catchy and direct (just as the rest of the songs in the first half are): no its, ands or buts about it, this track is solid pop gold. I mean, damn, check out those harmonies. They just dont stop:

dusk at cubist castle

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