Being laid off from a regular ol 8-5 kinda jobby job TOTALLY changes the way you listen to music, FYI. Before, my days were filled with spreadsheets and cubicles and computer speakers and new records. Now, my days are spent here, there and everywhere, so consumption is more intermittent and only the really really good stuff really really sticks.
That said, Menomena's new album Mines, which is out tomorrow on the wonderful Barsuk records, is some of the really really good stuff. It's obviously been a while since I've been inspired to write about a new record that I'm loving, but this is totally one of them - the perfect follow-up to 2007's Friend & Foe, which served as my head-over-heels-in-love introduction to the band. Like a carefully constructed web of intricately interlaced instrumentation, with sticky passages of percussion and pianos like dewdrops and the spider's melodic siren call at the center of it all, I feel like I'm still unraveling the album three years later, but I have to set it aside for the moment to turn my attention to Mines.
The other day, the boyfriend said that he thinks Mines is a better album than Friend & Foe, but I'll argue that the former is just the latter's perfect complement. More of what I fell for the first time, but maybe the web is a bit bigger this time around, a bit stronger, a bit more dappled with spots of sunshine and shade. It certainly makes me want to discover a way to clone my ears so that I can listen to Mines again and again WHILE I also give Friend & Foe another spin. Actually, while we're at it, I'd like to lend a third pair of ears to last year's Intuit by Ramona Falls, a side project of Menomena's Brent Knopf. Intuit was one of my favorite releases of 2009, but while it was exceptional, and certainly and obviously Menomena's sonic cousin, Mines is making me appreciate the extra note of urgency - and saxophone! - that appears in Menomena's work.
As always, regardless of what I think, check out Menomena's Mines for yourself. Just know that: (a) it's one of my favorite albums so far this year, (b) in the new landscape of unemployment it's soundtracking my days more than anything but LCD Soundsystem at the moment, and (c) were it not for the Summer of Guest DJs on Out the Other, I would be playing as many songs as possible from the album on the show tonight.
Mines is out tomorrow on Barsuk, and Menomena will be at the Mercy Lounge on Saturday, October 9. Pencil that one in, kids.