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Sleepytime Gorilla Museum - Of Natural History CD (album) cover

OF NATURAL HISTORY

Sleepytime Gorilla Museum

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

4.14 | 228 ratings

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thellama73
5 stars From the first few second of strange and disturbing sound coming from my speakers when I plopped this album in my stereo, I knew I had come across something wonderful.

"Of Natural History" was my first taste of Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, and ever since I have seen them perform live at every opportunity. There are very few records that truly deserve the tagline "like nothing you've ever heard before," but this is surely one of them. Oh sure, there's some Art Bears and Mr. Bungle in there, but the overall effect is totally unique.

The album opens with Nils Frykdahl's impressive baritone intoning "A Hymn to the Morning Star," interspersed by choruses of creepy falsettos. The tracks immediately gives the album an air of foreboding, which is paid off handsomely in the stunning "The Donkey Headed Adversary of Humanity Opens the Discussion," a furious avant-metal piece in (mostly) 5/4. In fact, the bands inability to stay in one time signature is heard throughout the album, and provides a restless and surreal forward motion.

The other shining star besides Nils is Carla Khilstedt, an incredible singer and violinist. Her chief composition and showcase of her talents is "Phthisis," a powerful number with a steadily rising melody that you think wlll never top out.

The other highlights on the album are too numerous to list, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the hilarious capper "Cockroach." It must be heard to be believed, and shows that the band does in fact have a sense of humor. "Of Natural History" has quickly become one of my favorite albums by ANY band, and it is a huge improvement upon their debut.

thellama73 | 5/5 |

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