Dig Baton Rouge

of Montreal’s Steady Rotation

Entertainment Writer

Since their formation by Kevin Barnes in 1996, of Montreal has risen to prominence in the modern day alternative landscape. After a failed fling with a woman from Montreal, Canada, Barnes and company began recording, and the rest has been history. The eccentric and constantly evolving group has released 12 LP’s since 1997 and has gone through a litany of members throughout the years.

The rotation of musicians is only fitting for such an experimental group, as their music is constantly shifting and heading in different sonic directions with the release of each record.

of Montreal
Sunday, May 4th With Special Guest Boogarians
Spanish Moon
Doors open at 8PM
Tickets are $15 in Advance and $17 Day of Show

“Well, [our music] is sort of all over the place, and our influences kind of work themselves into our music,” front man Kevin Barnes said, “We sort of bounce around a genre-hop, so I don’t think you can describe it in just a few words.”

Hailing from Athens, Ga., of Montreal’s sound is something that is crafted piece-by-piece and line-by-line, to come together in an amazing conglomeration of instrumentation and abstract, avant-garde lyricism. Barnes, who isolated himself in San Francisco during the creation of their latest album, paints a vivid picture akin to ’60s and ’70s rock icons like David Bowie and Bob Dylan every time his pen touches paper.

“Being in San Francisco was strangely inspiring,” he reflected. “It’s a magical place with a very strong presence and identity. It’s a very romantic place, because of the hippy generation and all of that kinda stuff that happened there.”

Barnes’ vivid imagination and preternatural songwriting ability ties in perfectly with the psychedelic guitar work and entrancing bass lines that of Montreal has made so alluring. The 2013 release of Lousy With Slyvianbriar perfectly encapsulates the idiosyncrasies and progressive sonic arrangements that of Montreal has spent 14 years creating.

“Making a record is a very organic process,” Barnes said. “We trust our intuition and our feelings, and try not to second guess ourselves. We just allow our recordings to evolve at their own speed and by the power that’s naturally in them. If you second guess, it feels contrived.”

Though the subject matter and ideas present in their tracks has fluctuated greatly in each release, the guitar and drum work has remained catchy, well-thought out and an integral part of their high-octane, happy-go-lucky sound that fans love so much.

Moreover, Barnes’ growth as a writer is most evident on the Polyvinyl Records release, Lousy With Slyvianbriar. “Lyric writing is very personal, it’s not really connected with other people,” Barnes expressed. “I can’t really imitate lyric writing, like I could with instruments. I don’t really think anybody specific influences on my writing.”

As easy as it is to recognize Barnes’ supreme talent, it would not be complete without the uncanny instrumentation of his current band mates Rebecca Cash, Clayton Rychlik, Jojo Glidewell, Bob Parins and Bennett Lewis.

“With so many different people, and different happenings, I never get sick of anyone,” Barnes said. “Everybody is very excited about our projects, and engaged in what they’re doing. It’s a very positive atmosphere. No one is a downer.”

When the doors open at the Spanish Moon on May 4th, and eager Baton Rouge concertgoers fill the floor, of Montreal will rely on the spontaneity that has propelled them to great success over the past several years.

“It’s definitely gonna be a very dynamic performance, both visually and musically,” Barnes said. “Everybody involved is really excited, and feels like they’re doing something special with their lives.”

Come show time, Barnes and the rest of the merry bunch will certainly ensure that the Spanish Moon attendees will be enthralled with their wonderful, weird and impressively fun tunes.

“It’s gonna be a really infectious, glamorous show with some more introspective moments in there,” Barnes elaborated, “We hope it really encapsulates the human experience in 90 minutes, and people come prepared, excited, and in the right state of mind to let themselves go and enjoy the communal experience.”



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