Showing posts with label ought. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ought. Show all posts

Thursday, February 22, 2018

video review: 'room inside the world' by ought

So yeah, I was expecting this to be better... and the fact that it's not was kind of painful, but eh, it happens.

Next up... hmm, how about some Courtney Patton and then something off my backlog, so stay tuned!

album review: 'room inside the world' by ought

I'm not going to lie, as much as I was looking forward to this release, some of the buzz leading up to it had me, well, more concerned than I wanted to be. 

Because look, I like Ought for their smart, amazingly well-textured and nervy post-punk that especially with their record Sun Coming Down in 2015 saw greater refinement in its melodic grooves and complex transitions. And for as much as Tim Darcy could sound like he was splitting his David Byrne impression with that of Elias Bender Ronnenfelt of Iceage, this sort of artistic but deeply felt indie rock is an easy sell for me. And that's before you consider how well they can translate the anxious tension at their core into the sort of unstable core where you literally cannot predict its shifts. 

But in the rollout for Room Inside The World, I starting hearing buzz that the band had changed labels and this record was embracing more new wave and synths and streamlining things even further - and I was really conflicted on this, mostly as the critical reception seem a little more reticent. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate Ought looking to intensify their internal sense of logic and composition within the songs - the improvisation is a nice touch but it can lead to mixed rewards - but there is such a thing as over-polish when you look at a band like Ought where you can lose some of the wild spirit that makes them distinct. And considering the mixed reception to Tim Darcy's solo project a year or so back, I wasn't sure how that would translate onto this project, but what the hell: what did we get on Room Inside The World?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

video review: 'sun coming down' by ought

Believe it or not, this one took a lot longer than you'd think. Really a tough one to dissect, especially when you can't find all the lyrics.

Right, so next... honestly, no clue. Could be Fetty Wap, could be Destroyer, we'll see! Stay tuned!

album review: 'sun coming down' by ought

So close to this time last year, give or take a month or two, I finally decided to cover the debut of the Canadian indie rock group Ought, More Than Any Other Day. Based out of Montreal, cracking with the hyper-literate jittery energy you'd expect from university students recording while the student population was protesting, it won a lot of critical acclaim from critics for the obvious parallels to Talking Heads or maybe even Vampire Weekend. I was a bit more ambivalent on the group, mostly because no matter how much I liked the smart lyricism and the interweaving chaotic sound of the record, it definitely overstayed its welcome, occasionally wasn't as nuanced as it tried to be, and ultimately left me with a distinctive feeling of anticlimax at the end.

Since then, Ought has been touring extensively, patching a new album together between shows and reportedly doubling down on their influences from Sonic Youth or maybe even The Fall, cranking up the energy and groove. On the one hand, I didn't have any problems with this - Ought never seemed like a band lacking in nervous energy, but I've been looking for some more aggressive indie rock as of late and this could probably satisfy. On the other hand, it didn't look like the band's issues with succinctness had gone away - only eight songs, yet your average song length is about five minutes, with the longest at nearly eight. But hey, if the music doesn't drag, I'm not going to complain, so what does Ought deliver with Sun Coming Down?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

video review: 'more than any other day' by ought (RETRO REVIEW)

Well, glad to finally get THIS off my plate. Took way too long - and filming this one was a real pain in the ass - but I'm glad it's done.

No idea what to cover next, but you can bet I'm not covering fucking Jason Mraz. Either way, stay tuned!

album review: 'more than any other day' by ought (RETRO REVIEW)

First, a brief history lesson: two years ago in the spring of 2012 the Liberal government of the Canadian province of Quebec aimed to raise university tuition rates approximately 75% from about $2100 per year to just under $3800. To the rest of Canada, this particular act was greeted with a mixed response. On the one hand, speaking as a guy just out of university, it sucks when your university tuition is raised by any amount, as it makes it harder for students to afford an education, which was originally the purpose of the tuition freeze in the first place. On the other hand, Quebec has had the lowest tuition in the country by thousands of dollars for Quebec residents, and their universities were starting to feel the pinch in maintaining or upgrading facilities, so breaking the tuition freeze did make a certain amount of sense. 

But you wouldn't have heard those discussions in Quebec, because throughout the spring of 2012, thousands of students took to the streets in protest, with several riots breaking out that the provincial government promptly overreacted to and the whole thing turned into a gigantic, politically ruinous mess. So why bring it up? Well, from that tumultuous incident came Ought, a Montreal based band blending the artier side of punk music with indie rock that seemed to be directly inspired by that event, along with Richard Hell and especially the Talking Heads. Now I originally planned on reviewing this record when it came out several months ago, but I figured now is as good of a time as ever to delve into the band and continue my foray into Canadian indie rock. So, what did I find?