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Antifogmatic (Deluxe)

June 15, 2010 | Format: MP3

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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: June 11, 2010
  • Release Date: June 15, 2010
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Copyright: 2010 Nonesuch Records, Inc.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:09:04
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B003PWR6NE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,444 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

Just really wacky, off the wall pop songs.
John Montroy
It's a fine piece of art, it's made of beautiful songs and great compositions, perfect instrumentation.
Arturo Pardo
This music dwells where Bluegrass meets Folk meets Classical.
Justin E Hout

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 39 people found the following review helpful By John Montroy on June 23, 2010
Format: Audio CD
This is the third album featuring Punch Brothers in some form another - the first being How to Grow, and the second being Punch - but in my mind, really the first true album from the group. How to Grow was still a bit of a Thile solo effort and had an abundance of covers; if nothing else it showed the group's obscene potential. Punch was an excellent 'official' debut, but that album was divided in half - over forty minutes of the album were taken up by Thile's rather excellent string quintet piece, "The Blind Leaving The Blind", while the last fifteen or so were group compositions. While Punch was a good album, it felt rather fragmented because of the clear subdivision of labor in the group; there were clearly two musical identities of the group. So this album, Antifogmatic, is in my mind their first pure musical statement of what the Punch Brothers can really do. And oh my god...what a statement.

The group presents a much more comfortable sound and picture of themselves on Antifogmatic - naturally so, for this album consists of nothing but group compositions. More traditional listeners might be put off by the album's weirdness at points - the group has no problem fiddling around in layers upon layers of dissonance, or storming through obscene chord changes at a blistering tempo. One might be tempted to label this as pretentiousness, or talent and technical skill gone horribly awry. Not so. To put this album in perspective, the listener has to understand the group itself. First off, the group is young and clearly loves itself. They know they've got something special, and they definitely feed off each other's musicianship in an atmosphere of giggling, goofy musicians coming up with obscene ideas. Second, each member of the group is a complete virtuouso on their respective instrument.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Leopold Stotch on June 17, 2010
Format: Audio CD probably does not need to be said, but I'll say it: there is no song-driven ensemble on the planet with the technical prowess, dynamic range, and unbridled adventurous spirit of the Punch Brothers. There is really nothing they can't play, no style they can't knowlingly reference, no time signature too tricky, no structure too convoluted, no volume too soft or too loud. It's all quite staggering, and the idea of finding or creating a music equal to their skills is equally daunting. I mean, you can play anything, so what do you play?

This is their first collectively conceived album -- the prior disk mostly consisted of a suite written and very carefully arranged by mandolinist and bandleader Chris Thile. That five such distinct voices came together to create something this compelling and singular is a grand achievement in and of itself. This is truly kaleidoscopic stuff: throw any old conceptions of verse/chorus/bridge out the window: sections emerge and fade, new music is introduced at surprising coordinates, instrumental roles are transposed and reconfigured at will. Thrilling stuff. Thile is also revealing himself to be a quite engaging vocalist and daring lyricist.

So, sure, it's bluegrass instrumentation, but this is stringband music fashioned from the same maverick, virtuosic spirit that lead Bill Monroe to create it in the first place: a spirit woefully departed from most modern bluegrass, which has instead -- for the most part -- become a bastion of conservative musical stagnation. Not for the faint of heart.

I did reserve the last star, though...paradoxically, I found an entire album of relentless innovation to be just a wee bit exhausting.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By J. Borkholder on June 15, 2010
Format: MP3 Music
The Punch Brothers have grown from being Chris Thile and friends to a full fledged group. Antifogmatic finds five amazing musicians on top of their games and blending together perfectly. Do yourself a favor and buy this album! While there are undoubtedly some Thile haters out there cuz they want to see him a pickin' and a grinnin', those with an open mind and an appreciation for great music will love this album.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Firey on October 13, 2010
Format: Audio CD
This album is perfect. The Punch Brothers are not only leading the field of experimental acoustic chamber music, they define it. Every song on this album is masterfully crafted, pulling influences and nuances ranging from Bach to Radiohead, Brahms to Debussy. The maturity and creativity on display here should be talked about for years to come, for they are years ahead of their time. We live in an era where genres still don't mix well and all the while the Punch Brothers defy our expectations with limitless art. Contrary to other reviewers' opinions about the accessibility or 'popiness' of this music, it is at a level that suits them perfectly. Wonderful motivic references to the different effects and societal roles of alcohol drench the record, leaving art and entertainment to take on equal roles through every song. As a lover of music, I can't hold back my infatuation for them. Hence, I will review each song:

You Are- The catchiness of this song and its inerrant pop sensibilities make for a toe-tapping ride every time. Woven through careful and sparse accompaniment are Thile's crooning vocals, reminding us that Punch Brothers, at many times, is a rock and roll band. It's as if the history of the group's instrumental roles have vanished in their entirety here, leaving them to create without regard to genre or tradition. "You are, you are, you are to me, like a very very wild thing."

Don't Need No- This material is possibly why I love the Brothers the most: only these boys could meld a chromatic groove, frightening transitions, and 21st century small-talk with the sour mash that their grandfathers drank and create something beautiful. Rhythms of five stop on dimes and immediately growl into an eclectic barn-dance revival, complete with ringing, jarring harmonies.
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