Evangelicals | The Evening Descends (Dead Oceans)

cd_evangelicals.jpgReally, the only three words that fit this album are "LISTEN RIGHT NOW."

 

 

 

 

 

 

After a minute of listening—the first 40 seconds being introductory noise and assorted instrument sounds—this album began to fill me with buzzwords. The kind of buzzwords that are perfect for the stickers on CD covers or the bottom-half of an Amazon.com page. In fact, this whole review should be written in italics and jammed between quotation marks.

So what kind of buzzwords did this tuneful propaganda throw into my brain? Here are a few:

Amazing

Astonishing

Staggering

Remarkable

Transcendent

Magnificent

Mind-Blowing

Brilliant. Simply brilliant.

Okay, so maybe that last one wasn’t so much of a buzzword as a buzzphrase. Really, the only three words that fit this album are "LISTEN RIGHT NOW."

In case I haven’t made myself clear, The Evening Descends is a very good album. The best pop album I’ve heard this side of…well, I can’t think of anything to compare this to.

You could draw some parallels to other bands. You could say Evangelicals sound like recent Of Montreal if Of Montreal had the Shins’ sensibility and slightly more comprehensible lyrics. But that would understate the group’s noisy insanity. There’s screaming, distortion and bizarre sounds on this album, but it’s still accessible. That’s also to say this album is accessible, but weird and strong enough to please even the snobbiest hipster. It’s also melodic enough to satisfy the world’s most jaded pop-classicist.

Other groups like Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine and the aforementioned Of Montreal have experimented with noise and/or psychedelica in pop. While those efforts are solid and often amazing, none of those groups held pop sensibilities (more buzzwords) as closely as Evangelicals apparently do.

No amount of praise can do this album justice. In lieu of that, here’s a preview of what you’ll hear when (not if) you get The Evening Descends:

1, Tight instrumentals, including spot-on drums and perfectly placed synthesizers.

2. Tenor vocals expressing emotions you’ve felt but can’t quite express yourself.

3. What will surely be—unless there’s some sort of explosion of genius releases—one of the best albums of the year.

That’s all. It’s high praise, but it’s 100% deserved. A+ | Gabe Bullard

RIYL: Having your mind blown (musically), The Shins, Of Montreal

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