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Paralytic Stalks (LP+MP3)

16 customer reviews

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Vinyl, February 7, 2012
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$17.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 4 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by in easy-to-open packaging. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

The 2012 full-length from of Montreal, Paralytic Stalks sees Kevin Barnes writing with a lyrical and musical direction that is infinitely more personal than anything he has written since 2007's Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? Each track feeds off the last in what seems a singular album-long movement that never allows you to rip your ears away. Paralytic Stalks at times resembles modern classical with its intricate compositions, while at others echoes of neo-prog, pseudo-country, and 60s pop. Available on 180-gram vinyl, CD and digital.
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Product Details

  • Vinyl (February 7, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Polyvinyl Records
  • ASIN: B006HH62GQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #169,795 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is has got to be the best album to come out of 2012 so far, and, in my not-so-humble opinion, pretty much overshadows almost every other pop album released over the last entire year (although the term 'pop album' is barely justifiable). Do yourself a favor: buy it. Listen to it over and over again until Kevin Barnes' voice drives your emotions over a cliff and into the haunting abyss that is his mind. Paralytic Stalks offers an even darker glimpse into Barnes' psyche, seeming to reach even farther into the depths than on False Priest or Skeletal Lamping. It holds true to their seductive sweetness, while drenching us in an electronic hell of sonic existential horror that is unparalleled in its sheer musical and emotional depth by what other pop artists of our time are passing off as entertainment. Settling for anything less than the quality of this work is to be both held prisoner by your own complacency and to be deprived of something truly beautiful.

"Dour Percentage" is an immediate hit for those expecting a progression of sorts from False Priest's sound, although the whole album has a more organic feel, with its flute and sax arrangements. As always, there are hooks everywhere, but they feel increasingly often as if they're being pulled like teeth right out of my skull. "Wintered Debts" is one of the catchiest damn lyrical see-saws my brain has ever had the pleasure of being hijacked on, but it takes some serious work to wrap your mind around before the addiction sets in. "We Will Commit Wolf Murder", immersing our ears in another one of Barnes' brilliant vocal layering exercises, is yet another treasure, which didn't occur to me to begin with; these songs always take me a good five or six listens to even begin to appreciate. Don't give up on them; some are an acquired taste.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Rudolph Klapper on February 7, 2012
Format: Audio CD
It was sometime around the third or fourth extended coda, amidst buzzsaw guitar riffs, cheesy sci-fi space effects, the jarring tonal shifts and the occasional burst of fire alarm noise, that I resigned myself to a particular fact: Kevin Barnes is never going to change. Or, to put it another way - he's always going to change, usually with a middle finger aimed in the general direction of his last record. And really, there's no incentive for him to rein himself in: ever since The Sunlandic Twins of Montreal has become a one-man show, and certainly no one is holding their breath waiting for Polyvinyl to edit their biggest draw. So it is that we get an album like Paralytic Stalks, one that is as sprawling, egomaniacal and bat**** insane as any Barnes has put down. This lack of an editor is what leads to a song like the divisive "Exorcismic Breeding Knife," a song so obviously anti-commercial and contrary to what of Montreal have built their sound on that it's less an actual song and more a referendum on just how far Barnes can go nowadays before people bat an eye. Chances are this one won't be on an Outback commercial anytime soon.

Make no mistake - this is nothing new for Barnes. Sure, he has been talking up 20th century minimalism in interviews - Penderecki, Ives, Schoenberg - but those are just convenient touchstones for an increasingly out-there experimentalism that has been a recurring theme in late-period of Montreal: Hissing Fauna's "The Past is a Grotesque Animal;" "You Do Mutilate" off of 2010's False Priest; the scattershot framework of Skeletal Lamping. The difference between those songs and "Exorcismic Breeding Knife," though, is the latter's utter lack of purpose.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By LonghornLady on March 23, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
MY GOD!!! This album is just SOOO real. Too real for some of you apparently. Like someone else previously said, Georgie Fruit has left the stage. I feel like the emotionality/angst that Kevin projected into that character have been brought back to their rightful home: his own head, body, and experience. I love every song on this album. For me personally, it's like a reflection of my life, and dare I go so far as to say, our generation as a whole. He just captures it. He gets it. It's like Skeletal Lamping has grown. Not grown up, but grown. I could go on and on, but the fact is this is the best album of 2012 so far. Other than skeletal Lamping, it's one of my most favorite of Montreal albums. I like the psychedelic spree stuff too, don't get me wrong, but this is just such a well executed, artistic expression of what our generation is going through and what we've came from I don't know how you cannot like it unless you're just not in touch (or comfortable) with yourself. I love that he had the gaul to make this. I've been waiting on something just like this, and didn't even know it. It' fun, it's beautiful, it's angry,it's poppy, it's jazzy, and i love it! Get it! Listen to it, and try to understand what he was attempting to convey. Don't put your expectations before the simple act of just listening to receive what he's trying to give you. Do it! Damn, album just ended and yes, I got a little sad about it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Justin Pruitt on February 28, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This album continues to display Of Montreals thriving dynamism and Kevin Barnes expected quirkiness. After reading a few reviews I wasn't expecting to really enjoy this as much as I did, but I feel constantly compelled to play it, and am truly loving it even more than I did albums like Hissing Fauna and Satanic Panic... this is a great album full of dark corners, sharp turns and blissful freakiness. Don't miss it.
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Paralytic Stalks (LP+MP3)
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