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Mogwai - The Hawk Is Howling CD (album) cover




Post Rock/Math rock

3.69 | 100 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Mogwai, one of the most important groups of the post rock movement (though they hate the tag), saying you don't know Mogwai is saying you don't know one of the most important groups in instrumental rock history. With their debut, Young Team, Mogwai gave the world a taste of what Post rock would become, a culmination of twin guitars, moving from arpeggio to arpeggio, either getting louder or softer, in a lengthy song to climax in some of the noisiest songs in history. The loud soft technique, probably the most crucial element to the average post rock band today, and I believe Mogwai played a huge part in exploiting this song style into the... Mainstream

Anyways, enough with their history, Mogwai released their newest album not too long ago, the follow up to the much mellower, and more solemn Mr. Beast; The Hawk is howling. Not only does this one show the group returning to the Happy songs for Happy people days with some catchy melodies, and some sense of humor, but also bring the extremely noisy pseudo metal days of Young Team. Therefore giving us a superb album, no masterpiece, but definitely better than Mr. Beast, and on par with Happy songs. The first half of the album, very mellow, and easy listening, with some typical (too typical?) post rock songs, except Batcat, which brings back their metal tendencies right out into the open for everyone to see, a very bold statement. Also we get the signal for the album, the sun smells too loud which sounds like it came straight out of happy songs, but nonetheless one of my favorite tracks. After the chill out track, Kings meadow, Mogwai return to their epic ways, which they haven't been around since their debut, which extremely excites me! The next three songs are all around eight minutes long, all slightly melancholic, and all climax with incredibly and/or heavy sections. My favorite of these is probably I love you, I'm going to blow up your school which is slightly more impactful to me because of it's absurd amount of melancholia.

I will admit, there really is not crazy stand out tracks like Mogwai fear satan, hunted by a freak, or Friend of the night, which is definitely a buzzkill considering that the album as a whole is pretty solid. Where there seems to be an increase in energy, and dynamic songs since Mr. Beast, besides the signal, there is a lack of catchy melodies which the band seemed to capitalize so well on in the last album. If they could only bring the trifecta of epic climaxes, catchy melodies, and energy together, the album would have the potential to be a masterpiece. Well, it's a very good album anyways, definitely a step up from their last, which was also good. I haven't heard all the output from this group, but from what I have heard, I haven't found a masterpiece yet. 4 stars

Dim | 4/5 |


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