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of Montreal's Command Of Their controllersphere

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on May 4, 2011 7:40PM

Photo by Patrick Heagney
of Montreal's thecontrollersphere, an EP of songs that didn't quite fit on last year's excellent False Priest, is an interesting beast. While we praised False Priest for harnessing in Kevin Barnes' penchant for running through a million ideas in every song by focusing on each tune's development, here we find him allowing singular ideas to unspool at great length to a no less desirous effect. Opening with the deeply creepy "Black Lion Massacre," a song driven primarily by an intense drum throb that allows Barnes to add layer upon layer of sexy dissonance atop before grinding to a halt, one falls quickly under this spell of hypnotism in motion. "Holiday Call" follows a similar underlying structure, allowing the song to grow ever more mesmerizing as it unspools, the dressing is different; funky and shiny instead of dark and turbulent.

Those two songs form the backbone of the EP, and flanking them are layers of shorter bursts of the sort of Bowie channeling Prince boogie that of Montreal have made their calling card. It's sightly disjointed stuff, it almost feels like you're stumbling around drunk in your underwear at a crowded party with all the lights inexplicably turned up high, before joyfully depositing you in the disc's closing track, "Salve Translator." You're left to dance merrily along, occasionally slowed by the jelly-fllled choruses sticking to your feet as you make your way towards the exit, only to be knocked backward by wall of black foreboding noise. Apparently there's no escaping thecontrollersphere.

The band will be in town at The Vic tomorrow, May 5. They've been on tour quite a while and we've learned that mid-tour is often the best time to see them. The kinks have been ironed out of their elaborate stage shows and the band as a whole seems more spontaneous and comfortable. Considering the last time they were in town was the best shows we'd seen them perform in many years, the prospect of tomorrow's date being even better is (almost) enough for us to splatter glitter onto our own aging torso and wrestle for a space stage center with the rest of the group's dedicated fans.

of Montreal plays Thursday, May 5, at The Vic, 3145 N Sheffield, 7:30 p.m., $22, all ages