Skeletal Lamping

( 4 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andrew Leahey
During the closing moments of 2007's Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?, bandleader Kevin Barnes introduced his alter ego, an effeminate singer by the name of Georgie Fruit. One year later, that character runs amok on Skeletal Lamping, having wrenched the spotlight away from Barnes' sugary pop and trained it on an ambitious hybrid of glam rock, experimental R&B, and Scissor Sisters-styled sex-funk. Barnes sounds truly uninhibited under the Fruit guise, making declarations like "I'm just a black she-male!" with flamboyant confidence. Such a shift in direction marks Of Montreal's ascent into the psychedelic clouds where Ziggy Stardust once flew, only this time, the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andrew Leahey
During the closing moments of 2007's Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?, bandleader Kevin Barnes introduced his alter ego, an effeminate singer by the name of Georgie Fruit. One year later, that character runs amok on Skeletal Lamping, having wrenched the spotlight away from Barnes' sugary pop and trained it on an ambitious hybrid of glam rock, experimental R&B, and Scissor Sisters-styled sex-funk. Barnes sounds truly uninhibited under the Fruit guise, making declarations like "I'm just a black she-male!" with flamboyant confidence. Such a shift in direction marks Of Montreal's ascent into the psychedelic clouds where Ziggy Stardust once flew, only this time, the listener catches a ride on the back of a transgendered Prince fanatic whose songs are fragmented and confusing, yet still peppered with irresistible hooks. Like the album's cover art an origami-influenced billfold whose flaps unfurl to form a giant floral display, Skeletal Lamping demands attention by being purposely puzzling. The music is extravagant and elaborate; each song is comprised of multiple vignettes, many of them completely different in style, and each track spills into the next. It's interesting to watch the pieces fit together -- to pinpoint the exact second where one song ends and another one begins. But whether or not you enjoy Skeletal Lamping depends on your tolerance for unchecked ambition and left-field experimentation, both of which are emphasized here. Of Montreal have rarely sounded so free, so unrestrained, but this is a love-it-or-lump-it album, a polarizing effort that -- depending on personal preference -- is either irresistibly attractive or overzealously pretentious.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/21/2008
  • Label: Polyvinyl Records
  • UPC: 644110016027
  • Catalog Number: 160
  • Sales rank: 81,352

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Of Montreal Primary Artist
Kevin Barnes Track Performer
Dorothy Alexander Keyboards
Heather McIntosh Cello
Aaron Jollay Trombone
Charlie Estes Trumpet
Alexis Daglis Saxophone
James Huggins III Drums
Technical Credits
Kevin Barnes Composer, Engineer
Glenn Schick Mastering
Elaine Fong Art Direction
Matt Lunsford Art Direction
David Barnes Artwork, Art Direction
Nina Barnes Artwork, Art Direction
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

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(0)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Rapid mood swings are ultimately addictive

    This album combines the darkness of Hissing Fauna with the exuberance of Sunlandic Twins...often within the course of a few seconds. Constant shifting of mood and subject is disorienting and takes some dedication to get used to, but extended listening will be rewarding! The same type of innovative musical patterns that addicted me to past albums emerge here. Certain songs, such as An Eluardian Instance are almost touching and very brave in Mr. Barnes endless self exposure. The lyrics throughout this flirt with incoherence but have emotional resonance that, due to their inspecific subjects and overly specific references and descriptions are truly poetic and will resonate with anybody who has imagination and emotions.
    Once the listener gets used to the twists and turns of this album, they will become lifelong devotees. It's totally inspiring and organic! If you are new to Of Montreal, Skeletal Lamping is not the ideal starting place. That would be either Hissing Fauna or Sunlandic Twins.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Overall disappointing outing for a new personality of Mr. Barnes.

    Apparantly the lead singer and mastermind behind Of Montreal has been creating new personalities for himself, and in the process has an album that feels like it has multiple personality disorder. In stark contrast to Hissing Fauna..'s concentrated awesome, Skeletal Lamping feels jittery, drugged-out, almost over-compensating. Hissing Fauna had this melancholy life examining mood to it, that even though the songs were dancy, they were dancy with a point, with an energy that wasn't as prevelant in previous albums, and an energy which seemingly has gone out of control in this one.<BR/><BR/>The problem with the album is certainly not that it's lacking in dancy beats, in catchy hooks, or in energy. The problem is that once the listener latches on to a hook, it's over, which is an immense tease with the potential of some of these hooks. It's akin to listening to a more approachable Mike Patton (Mr. Bungle) or Mindless Self Indulgence record, with the mood shifting on a dime, happy and bouncing at one moment, moody and regretful the next.<BR/><BR/>It seems for the duration of this album that Mr. Barnes is trying desperately to keep away whatever demons are pursuing him, but in the process creates a work that just feels wrong, while in the greater scheme of things creates a interesting perspective into the musician's life.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews