Wolf Parade – At Mount Zoomer
Acquired: Love Garden, New, 2008
Well, despite the odds, Wolf Parade's sophomore LP was just as good as their debut. Ok, so that's questionable, but I thought it was pretty fucking rad. For a band who could have so easily remade their first record and made something that was pretty good, they went in another direction and made an album that was pretty great. Darker, longer songs, culminating in Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner's first collaboration, the terrific “Kissing the Beehive,” make this one pretty memorable for me. It feels like everything Boeckner was learning in Handsome Furs and everything Krug had learned in Sunset Rubdown coming together and improving the quality and scope of their potentially flash-in-the-pan band dramatically. I think this album's quality is justified by how good 2009's Handsome Furs and Sunset Rubdown records were. Easily the best record either side project has produced (definitely for the Furs, I'm still up in the air on whether Dragonslayer is better than Random Spirit Lover, so maybe not "easily"), we can only assume that the next Wolf Parade record is going to be either a goddamned masterpiece or a muddled failure that will result in both songwriters going their separate ways, most likely for the better. But when they come together, they really know how to play off of each other's strengths and make a solid fuckin' record!
Here's an awesome live version of "Kissing the Beehive," which I think would have made a better album title had it not been potentially copyright infringing!