Sunday, February 27, 2011

Momus - Timelord (1993)

Okay, so I'm a little late with my 20,000 hit celebration post (currently sitting at 21,100 overall, 5700 for the month, and generally 300 or so uniques a day), but here it is finally. I know I promised a Felt album, but I've been in a Momus mood all day today, so I figured I'd share one of my favorites of his instead.

First of all take a good glance at that brilliant cover photo and tell me that Nick Currie isn't the man of all men. I mean, really, just genius. Although not quite as good as Voyager, which, in this blogger's opinion may very well be the best collection of songs recorded in the last 50 years, Momus followed up his magnum opus with a record in the same vein as its predecessor and a record equally as brilliant and ambitious (not to mention brilliantly titled). That album is Timelord, which is the focus of our attention today. The late 80s and the early 90s were Momus' "serious" period and this, along with Voyager could be considered his most austere work. Momus was always pushing the boundaries of acceptability within accessible pop structures. Overall, this was Momus' most eccentric work to date as well. Keep in mind that when I say this album is eccentric, I'm speaking in historical context, as anyone's who's heard his albums in this century know that next to those curios and novelty music such as the "O" series, Timelord would be considered pop Momus.

The album starts off with a sampled, techno influenced bang, in similar fashion to Voyager with the electro-nostalgic number, "Platinum" . "Enlightenment" which, in my opinion, is the standout track on Timelord and like a good majority of the the record is a mediation on true love or the impossibility of true love depending on your perspective. "It's not love, its mathematics" Momus sings (almost speaks) on "You've Changed," one of the album's more neurotic and reflective songs which weaves a complicated story of a complicated relationship that I'm sure just about everyone can relate to if you can get past the cryptic lyrics (although the title says it all - time changes people, and sometimes not for the best). "Rhetoric" (featured in tne mentally stimulating video below) once again meditates on true love and is also one of the album's stronger tracks. "Suicide Pact" is a soft and scintillating piece and marks a turn for the slower, more melancholic latter portion of the album until closing track "Breathless" which is a return to the pop style harbored on the earlier half and almost sounds like a winter time waltz. Hey, it's Momus. You should know by now to expect the unexpected. All in all, a very, very strong album, that had high expectations to live up to and almost did, but not quite. I'm going to go ahead and give this record the 10 that it deserves, and consider going back to my Voyager post and changing its rating to an 11 because its that fucking good.

Also thought I'd mention one of the most twisted cases of cosmic irony I've ever heard about. On the track "Enlightenment" Momus sings "And tell me you'll be there
when I've only got one eye." Four years later, he contracted acanthamoeba keratitis from a contact lens case washed with Greek tap water, losing the use of his right eye (and forever making eyepatches a fashion statement). Now that's some ironic, bizarre, fateful shit right there.

Rating: 10/10


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