I have had the pre-release of this album for about a month and a half and I cannot describe how utterly amazed and estatic I was when I first heard "Messes of Men" drip through my speakers. I knew that mwY had it in them to just totally smash my expectations... but I didn't expect it.
And they did.
This album is one of those fantastic cds that works well as a whole album... and just about every song works exceptionally well as a stand alone track, also. There are times when saying that the album flows from one song to another is a bad thing... but in this case it doesn't mean that the songs sound the same at all. They just work really well together in their sequencing.
Compared to their past work this album feels more organic and textured. A lot more acoustic guitars (that's right, Aaron picks up the hippie axe)... some horns (coutesy of Anathallo)... a little accorian-esque critter (also done by Aaron)... which, when coupled with some astonishing song twists and turns is quite a stunning experience.
Perhaps the single thing that most catapults this album is the great background vocals. They are first demonstrated on track one, "Messes of Men." Aaron mumbles through several verses, at first accompanied by raindrops... then by the rest of the band. And then the back ground vocals bring a theatrical flair, moaning above Aaron "Oh my G-d!" Shivers!
What mewithoutYou has done is craft not only a career defining masterpiece, but an album that could well join scenester hipsters, the anti-folk crowd, the post-punk Fugazi faithful, poetry slam attendees, emo self-depricists, and Christians all in one careless sweep.
Will everyone "get it"? No. But enough people should "get it" to catapult mewithoutYou to the upper echelons of stardom.
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