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Sleepytime Gorilla Museum - Grand Opening And Closing CD (album) cover


Sleepytime Gorilla Museum



3.81 | 99 ratings

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Post/Math Rock Team
4 stars When this album was still new I was recommended it by Mr. Bungle fans who figured, if you like Bungle you will probably like this too. I did but I don't think it sounds too much like Bungle. SGM was formed by former members of metal band Idiot Flesh. The violin work and vocals of Carla Kihlstedt are an important component of the music. Her vocals contrast with the more angry, metal type male vocals. The band uses some home-made and custom-made instruments that make their music unique. The music itself is hard to describe but is generally a mix of experimental metal and avant-prog.

"Sleep Is Wrong" is the leadoff track and one of the better songs on the album. I like the gibberish chanting. There are parts where it sounds like different instruments were recorded at different speeds. Around 2:45 you hear voices that sound like they are broadcast on an old radio. Some snoring noises in the middle. Love the ending where everything gets more intense. "Ambugaton" is my favourite song here. Almost completely instrumental. The first half sounds like some kind of post-rock/chamber-rock hybrid. Nice violin. Almost Crimson sounding at times. Love the delayed guitar at the end.

Eerie harmonium dominates "Ablutions," which reminds me of Art Bears, particularly Carla's Dagmar-like delivery. Things get more dense with the addition of other sounds. In the middle gets loud with guitars and distorted bass along with male and female voices singing together. Carla counts numbers in a strange way as the instruments around her get very avant-garde. "1997" sounds more like Idiot Flesh. This song is almost a cross between the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Metallica. Very dated sounding now. Only after 3 minutes does it get more interesting and avant-rock-y.

Cool sounds at the beginning of "Powerless." Love the bass sound after a minute. Nice and catchy singing in this song. The music is fairly structureless until almost 3 minutes when it starts grooving on a riff. Just love the bass sound starting around 6 1/2 minutes. Crazy "la la" vocals at one point. More cool sounds at the end but completely different to the ones at the start. "Sleepytime" has the title repeated in a lullaby voice for awhile before some harmony vocals. The music is some kind of bizarre mix of a children's music box and archaic folk music. After 4 minutes the song changes to almost a waltz. Keeps changing till it gets more metal sounding with some guitar soloing. Interesting repeated lyrics near the end before some great melodic singing in a "lie, lie, lie" fashion.

"Sunflower" is the most avant-garde song but also the most boring. Good idea to put it at the end. SGM are known for their theatrical live shows. There is a mythology connected to the band's name and the title of this album. Heady stuff. I like the follow up just as much but don't enjoy the third album as much as the first two. Great modern avant-prog. 4 stars.

zravkapt | 4/5 |


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