Saturday, May 16, 2009

Passion Pit vs. MGMT

While MGMT's "Oracular Spectacular" was one of the best reviewed albums last year, but looking back, I'm not sure if it deserved all of the praise. "Kids," "Time to Pretend," and "Electric Feel" were all awesome songs (I'd put "Kids" as one of the Top 10 of 2008), but as a whole, the album was a bit spotty. I think that if some tracks were looked at in a test tube, completely separated from the hype of the album, they wouldn't be as well-received. The second half of "Oracular" just feels repetetive- I would personally have enjoyed the album much more if they stopped at "Kids." The first five songs are by far the strongest. Another gripe I have about MGMT is their concern with image. I know a lot of rock n' roll is about image, but I feel that they are so concerned with maintaining status as trippy hippies who never give interviewers straight answers that they don't care if they half-ass an album. They have confidence that hipsters wearing face paint and feathers will still show up for their shows and rave about their records and videos (which consistantly push the bar on ridiculous/bizarre).

This brings me to my next point. Passion Pit, currently one of the most buzzed-about bands around, have been compared a lot to MGMT. I see the resemblance in that both craft trippy electronic jams, but so far, I prefer Passion Pit. PP is much more polished than MGMT, and it seems like they care much more about the quality of the music they put out. Last year's "Chunk of Change" EP didn't have a bad song on it- and "Sleepyhead" was simply mind-blowing. Based on that EP alone, they're only 4 songs short of matching MGMT's repetoire. With PP's album "Manners" to be released Tuesday (May 19), many tracks have already leaked to the web. And, not surprisingly, each is a gem. "Moth's Wings" is an almost-anthemic joint that seamlessly blends organic vocals and beats with synthetic dribbles and drones. "Little Secrets" kicks off like the soundtrack to a vintage Nintendo game and then becomes a syrupy sing-along banger. The last song I've heard off of "Manners" is "The Reeling," a thumping jam with breezy vocals and heavy synths overlapping a thrashing beat. Each of these songs is just so well-crafted; they set Passion Pit miles above MGMT. [Plus, in reference to my complaint about MGMT's image concern, Passion Pit just look like a group of regular guys trying to make some good songs. Can't complain.]

Moth's Wings- Passion Pit
Little Secrets- Passion Pit
Sleepyhead- Passion Pit


Anonymous said...

I completely agree, homie. Passion Pit is also so much better live.

Anonymous said...

Although i agree, my heart strings still tie with MGMT.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Oracular Spectacular is one of the most solid albums I've ever heard. Quite frankly I almost like the second half of the album more because it hasn't been overplayed to death. "of Moons, Bird and Monsters" is one of MGMT's best songs to date. While the change pronounciation (from Management to Em-Gee-Em-Tee) ticked me off a little bit, I honestly couldn't care less about MGMT's focus on image as long as they keep realeasing good music.

That being said, people need to keep their eyes peeled on the Pit.