Justin Vernon’s third Bon Iver album is a weird and wonderful thing
...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead : Leeds Metropolitan University
A band playing it safe. A band paying some dues. As if...
As if. We’re only one song in and shrieking singer-guitarist-drummer Jason Reece is soaring high above the heads of the crowd, microphone held aloft like an Olympic torch. Before ‘Homage’ reaches its first chorus, he’s hauling himself out of the fray by his mic lead and hurtling back in for more.
Once, when the atonal screech of Sonic Youth were the band’s closest antecedent, you occasionally got the impression that the music was
almost incidental: a nifty soundtrack to some gleeful equipment destruction.
But with Conrad Keely at the helm, the chiming ‘Another Morning Stoner’ and the somersaulting ‘Baudelaire’ sound immense. Sure, ‘A Perfect Teenhood’ is little more than Freudian roar, but there’s plenty to look at: Neil Busch windmilling, Townshend-style at his bass, Keely climbing the crash barrier as fans ruffle his sweaty fringe. The drumkit is ceremonially trashed at the end of a steely ‘Totally Natural’. It’s enough. There will be no encore.
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