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Dust of Retreat

4.8 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Audio CD, March 28, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

The Dust of Retreat, is a wintry sort of album, filled with stories and observations, made tastier with Jesse Lee's cello, Emily Watkins' rhodes piano and Hubert Glover's trumpet. Chris Fry played the drums and Casey Tennis played more drums and banged on things with mallets. Tyler Watkins played electric bass, usually without any shoes on his feet. Artemis. 2006.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 28, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Indieblue Music
  • ASIN: B000E6TZLK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,543 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Margot & the Nuclear So and So's Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 11, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Witches, vampires and "glass eyed pets" inhabit Margot and the Nuclear So-and-So's' debut album, "The Dust of Retreat."

But despite all the otherworldly stuff in it, this is an album about bruised, abused love affairs, wrapped up in multilayered indie-rock. And the Indiana band has a unique, shimmering brand of music that sounds like the Decemberists locked inside a haunted house.

It opens with the haunting, otherworldly strains of "A Sea Chanty of Sorts," a mournful ballad that launches out into sweeping solos at times. "And if you love well that should be enough/instead it turns your joy into sorrow," Richard Edwards murmurs. "My women lied/she was a witch in disguise... when we kissed/it didn't feel poisonous..."

He follows it up with the bittersweet "Skeleton Key" ("I did a sick, sick thing to my love/My lack of loyalty, it swallowed her up"), bouncy chamberpop about vampires, blasts of electro-riddled indie-rock, folky pop about vampires and the emptiness of fame, and languid indiepop with a poignant edge.

When a band is named after a Wes Anderson character (Margot from "The Royal Tenenbaums"), you know it's worth a second (maybe a third) listen. And this is the sort of music that you'd expect to find in such a movie -- poignantly introspective, and a tad whimsical. In a good way.

Guitar melodies swirl around the music, interspersed by haunting, voicelike shimmer of synth, and the dusky sweeps of cello strings, all wrapped up in a mellow Rhodes passage. There's the occasional jazzy trumpet, folky banjo, tambourine, and piano melody too. None of the songs are actually bad -- but the ghostly chamberpop is what works the best.
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By M. Tacker on December 11, 2006
Format: Audio CD
This has, in the nearly 2 years since its original release, become one of my top albums of all time. The songs are beautiful with melodies so well written that you instantly feel like you know them. Richard's songwriting is brilliant - sweet, sometimes sad, and emotional without being cheesy. The instrumentation is beautifully crafted and well thought out.

Highly recommended.
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Format: Audio CD
Margot and the Nuclear So and So's deftly combine sounds of folky acoustic guitar, driving electric guitar, smooth cello, and catchy piano to create a wonderfully unique sound. Singer/songwriter Richard Edwards, formerly of the band Archer Avenue, continues his trend of unbeatable vocal melodies paired with poignant lyrics. While Archer Avenue's album I Was an Astronaut will break your heart if it's not already broken, Margot's Dust will make you realize that there are more beautiful things in life to be concerned with than love. Themes like the bitterness of life and loss of childhood innocence are prominent throughout, but instead of drowning in minor keys and drop-tuned guitars, Richard leans toward the more subdued, introspective end of the spectrum. Rather than wallow in the sadness, he finds beauty in the grays and browns of urban life.

Excerpt from review of original Standard Recordings release (May 5, 2005) from Rockmusicreview.com (Jack Shepler, editor-in-chief)

Full review of Artemis Records re-release (March 28, 2006) to be posted later.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I only recently came across this gem of an album from the Indiana based Margot and the Nuclear So and So's. I was immediately smitten with The Dust of Retreat, and it has become one of my "desert island" albums.

Self classified as "chamber pop," The Dust of Retreat had everything I look for in a good album; it had catchy but sophisticated songwriting, it was emotionally touching, and the music itself was lush and beautiful. It has a diverse array instruments, from the traditional guitars, basses, and drums, to the more unconventional cellos, banjos (on one track), melodica and trumpet. All of these instruments combine to play amazing songs in their own right.

The songs here are simply written without being trite and generic. The quiet, pensive "A Light on a Hill" and the following "Talking in Code" make for a fantastic medley that consistently bring me to the brink of tears. Songs such as "Barfight Revolution Power Violence" and "Paper Kitten Nightmare" are lighter in mood and provide the listener with a moment of relief from an otherwise very dark album. "Bookworm" is an excellent closer, following the "A Light On a Hill/Talking In Code" pairing as a lighter, hopeful ending.

Track by track, I find that many songs seem to stick together in groups for me, divided by certain "bookend" types of songs. "A Sea Chanty of Sorts" is an excellent opener, followed by the duo of "Skeleton Key" and "Vampires in Blue Dresses". Next is "Quiet as a Mouse", the first I had heard from this group (which is also an EXCELLENT music video by the way), and I think it the heaviest and darkest songs on the album. It's followed by a dark, but much quieter "Jen Is Bringin' the Drugs", which serves as my "bookend" for the first part of the album.
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By baloo on January 7, 2015
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Dust of retreat has to be one of the most incredible albums from M&NSS. Many of the songs reach out to you, especially with the depth Richard Edwards has in his voice and how different his songs are from other bands. Although I bought this album a long time ago, I listen to many of the same songs almost every day without tiring of them. Love this band
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