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Saturday, March 28, 2009

From Monument To Masses - On Little Known Frequencies (2009)

Genre :
Post-rock, Experimental, Canada

Tracklist :

1. Checksum
2. (Millions Of) Individual Factories
3. Beyond God & Elvis
4. A Sixth Trumpet
5. An Ounce Of Prevention
6. The First Five
7. Let Them Know It’s Christmastime
8. Hammer & Nails

Musically, OLKF is the most accomplished FMTM effort yet, and this is perhaps why the samples are less frequent than those in past works. With the band facing a new recording process (the guitar, bass, synths, samples, and piano are now added before the drums as a result of drummer Francis Choug's relocation), greater room was left for development and experimentation in the song writing process. The sound on OLKF is bigger, wider and denser, with a greater sense of craft and a maturity in the song writing structure that brings out a larger depth of melody. “(Millions of) Little Factories” hurtles a long at the frantic, heavy pace, “The First Five” has strong electronic and DJ Shadow leanings, while “Hammer & Nails” beings at somber post-rock, moving into math-rock, then ending with a climatic metal ending. The album’s highlight is undoubtedly “Let Them Know It’s Christmastime” (sic) with its infectious funky rhythm built around a sample about the Mexican government’s reaction to peasant farming when under monetary pressure, leading to a sweeping breakdown, before an arpeggio-heavy Minus the Bear ending reaches a melodic, uplifting climax.

On Little Known Frequencies is without doubt one of the best albums you’ll hear in 2009. It encapsulates the sound of an extremely talented group of musicians truly honing their voice, calling on their past experiences to deliver their best music to date. From Monument to Masses' ability to mix a plethora of different styles effortlessly and constantly pushing the boundaries of the instrumental music cements their place as one of the most important bands within the genre. The steady evolution and refinement of their sound, coupled with their provoking political approach, make them impossible to ignore, and if you have until now, today is the time to join their unstoppable movement. by TSB

Sure, lovers of post-rock will find plenty to love and admire here, and the detractors will say it sounds just like all the other bands who practise this art. But in a world that’s becoming increasingly cold, dark and worrisome, I’m going to plug into FMTM and take solace in their epic political symphonies of wonder. by Rich Hughes

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