THIS IS AN OF MONTREAL PRIMER
What is of Montreal?
A band which, surprisingly enough, doesn’t hail from Canada but rather Athens, Georgia. Though it started as part of the Elephant 6 Collective (the group that brought us the sweet stylings of hipster god Jeff Mangum) and followed that sound for a few years, frontman Kevin Barnes (who pretty much is the band, when you get down to it) quickly went off in his own direction. They released their first album in 1997 and have been steadily churning out albums since.
What genre is this? Why does it sound like somebody is having sex in my ears?
of Montreal has sampled pretty much every genre ever. They started off with a lo-fi indie rock sound, moved on to vaudevillian concept albums, dabbled in electronica and are now in a sort of funk/electronic/who the fuck knows sort of stage. Note that this description doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Why should I listen to of Montreal?
of Montreal seems a little bit daunting at first. They have put out a lot of music that probably doesn’t seem all that accessible at first glance. That is why I am putting together this primer. Listening to of Montreal will not only give you aural pleasures previously undreamed of, but it will make you the coolest cat on the block. Don’t tell me you don’t want that.
Why isn’t the “o” capitalized?
Because fuck you, that’s why.
I heard that of Montreal has a lot of concept albums. Why are you choosing to pick apart pieces of their perfectly constructed masterpieces?
Yes, of Montreal often puts together concept albums. And their songs probably work best when listened to in the order that they were originally intended to. But telling people to go out and listen to 10 albums isn’t the best way to get them into a band. The songs I’m listing here are the best introductory songs from each album, with the idea that if you like them, to go out and listen to the album as a whole if you like what you hear.
I am a huge of Montreal fan and I find your sinful omission of my favorite “Dustin Hoffman” song from the Early Four Track Recordings to be the ultimate proof that you aren’t a real fan at all and I am going to eviscerate you/report you the e6townhall authorities.
Listen. of Montreal has put out a lot of music. This isn’t “of Montreal—Deep Cuts.” This is a primer: AKA, to introduce people to the band. As a result, I’m only including songs from their studio albums. And you know what? This is my fucking primer, so I’m including my favorite songs, not what anybody else wants to dictate. People can go see out the EPs and compilation albums on their own. In fact, please do. Buy their albums and merch and whatnot and contribute to the success of one of my favorite bands. This is just to get you started. This is only the beginning.
(Also: if you click the link to the album title, that’ll give you a download to the songs listed below. A download for the entire thing will be at the end of the post.)
CHERRY PEEL (1997)
02. Don’t Ask Me to Explain
03. Sleeping in the Beetle Bug
THE BEDSIDE DRAMA: A PETITE TRAGEDY (1998)
01. One of a Very Few of a Kind
02. Happy Yellow Bumblebee
03. Panda Bear
THE GAY PARADE (1999)
01. Fun Loving Nun
02. Jacques Lamure
03. My Favorite Boxer
COQUELICOT ASLEEP IN THE POPPIES: A VARIETY OF WHIMSICAL VERSE (2001)
01. Good Morning Mr. Edminton
02. Rose Robert
ALDHILS ARBORETUM (2002)
01. Isn’t it Nice?
02. Jennifer Louise
03. Pancakes for One
SATANIC PANIC IN THE ATTIC (2004)
01. Disconnect the Dots
02. Eros’ Entropic Tundra
03. Spike the Senses
THE SUNLANDIC TWINS (2005)
01. So Begins our Alabee
02. The Party’s Crashing Us
03. Oslo in the Summertime
HISSING FAUNA, ARE YOU THE DESTROYER? (2007)
01. Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse
02. A Sentence of Sorts in Kongsvinger
03. Bunny Ain’t No Kind of Rider
SKELETAL LAMPING (2008)
01. An Eluardian Instance
02. Gallery Piece
03. Id Engager
FALSE PRIEST (2010)
01. I Feel Ya’ Strutter
02. Enemy Gene
03. Like a Tourist
DOWNLOAD OF MONTREAL PRIMER