The Else

Studio Album by released in 2007
The Else's tracklist:
I'm Impressed
Take Out the Trash
Upside Down Frown
Climbing the Walls
Careful What You Pack
The Cap'm
With the Dark
The Shadow Government
Bee of the Bird of the Moth
Withered Hope
Contrecoup
Feign Amnesia
The Mesopotamians

The Else review

They Might Be Giants returning to the past

American alternative rock duo They Might Be Giants was formed in 1982 and consists of John Linnell and John Flansburgh. The band is often called the two Johns. Before releasing their eponymous debut album in 1986, the duo performed in and around New York for quite some time and then made an original aadvertisement of their material by recording songs on the answering machine and putting the phone number in local newapapers with a short title Dial-A-Song. At the beginning of their career Linnell and Flansburgh performed alone, playing guitar, accordion and saxophone and using either drum-machine or previously recorded audiocassettes. Yet after the release of the fourth album Apollo 18, the guys invited several musicians to join them in a band. Today They Might Be Giants includes both Johns, guitarist Dan Solder Miller, bassist Danny Weinkauf and drummer Marty Beller and with this very line-up the collective is releasing its twelfth studio album The Else. The creation has become a sort of returning to the past for it is close to the early albums of They Might Be Giants in its mood, and at the same time there are a lot of unexpected but pleasant moments on The Else.

Strange, serious and funny album The Else

As always They Might Be Giants remain outstanding songwriters and keep creating unique arrangements for their melodies, which are often catchy. Although there is quite a significant number of rock bands that explore the same musical territory They Might Be Giants have managed to preserve its individuality. Alongside with that one of the surprises for the fans is the complete absence of accordion on The Else for the first time of the band’s existence. The opener I’m Impressed is based on a contrast between a hard guitar accompanement and a soft tune, and a rhythmic song Take Out The Trash, a funny instruction to girls how to finish a relationship in the most effective way, is a bit lighter composition. Track Upside Down Frown is another example of contrast: an impetuous rhythm and plangent singing of John create an inimitable disbalance making the song different from the others. Philosophic Climbing The Walls and songs with a political implication Careful What You Pack, The Cap’m and The Shadow Government are remarkable for the seriousness of lyrics, another surprise from They Might Be Giants. Composition With The Dark starts as an old record, and turns into an unusual ballad with a very attractive arrangement, and the most interestring metaphoric lyrics is on Bee The Bird Of The Moth, refined with varied horns. Feign Amnesia has one of the most experimental sounding on the album, and final song The Mesopotamians returns us to the reality, hinting at to the politcal situation in today’s world.

One of the collective’s most topical creations

Many believe that the name They Might Be Giants prompts the fathomless ambitions o the band’s members, but in fact the phrase initially belonged to Don Quixote ready to attack windmills. The name has prbably defined the whole creative work of the duo – its lyrics is often full of fantasy and absurd, and music conquers with its uniqueness. The significant part of the band’s fan base consists of children for its songs often become soundtracks for children’s TV programs. The year of 2002 saw They Might Be Giants releasing its first album for the whole family No!, and in 2005 its follow-up Here Come The ABCs appeared in stores to the happiness of the kids. For that any some other reasons They Might Be Giants certainly is one of the most interesting and inventive rock bands to date. Each of its new albums amazes with its difference from the previous ones, and at the same time one can always unmistakably state that the work belongs to two Johns. The Else is not an exception. Album has been produced by legendary The Dust Brothers, by Pat Dillett and the members of They Might Be Giants themselves. Definitely one of the collective’s most topical creations The Else will become a great addition to any musical collection and will please all those who are fond of stylistically complicated texts.

(26.07.2007)
Rate review2.90
Total votes - 10


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