The Mountain Goats – The Life Of The World In Flux
Rough Trade 2009
Listen while reading:
I think most of us own a copy of the new Mountain Goats album The Life Of The World To Come and most of us just love it becuase it’s one of the best records in 2009. At least for me. But rather little was wrote about the bonus cd The Life Of The World In Flux which includes the demos of the regular album. One reason for this could be that you just have two oppurtunities to get the demos. The first one is to buy the mp3 version of The Life Of The World To Come over at thinkindie.com because in this case you get The Life Of The World In Flux for free (as mp3s). But to get The Life Of The World In Flux in physical form you have to purchase it via Routh Trade together with the actual album and a small surcharge. I think this whole marketing strategy is a bit confusing but what can you do?
Also it seems not to be correct to speak of TLOTWIF as a bonus cd because at thinkindie.com you can read that “the artist has requested this special arrangement to keep the bonus release as a proper separate release.1” So it seems warrantable to spend some words on it instead of treating it like a simple bonus cd or just the demos of The Life Of The World To Come. But before I go over to the music let me tell you what you can find on TLOTWIF. Mostly it features the demo versions from the album tracks but there are also demo versions of the two bonus tracks Proverbs 6:27 and Enoch 18:14 (sidenote: to get the first one you have to order the track separately via amazon.com and for the second one you have tu purchase the whole iTunes versions of The Life Of The World To Come because it’s an album only track…this whole mess is just a pain in the arm). But the album also features two previously unreleased tracks namely Daniel 12:18 and Matthew 11:14-19.
The demos were recorded “in hotels, buses, living rooms and small studios in colorado, massachusetts, utah, and north carolina.2” This and the fact that the levels of the tracks were kept (wherefore the volume is highly unbalanced) give The Life Of The World In Flux the charm of a real lo-fi record. So if you are a fan of the raw and lo-fi sound of The Mountain Goats you really should get your hands on these demo versions. I think this is also the reason why they wanted them to be a separate release and not just the bonus cd of The Life Of The World To Come. It’s noticeable that The Life Of The World In Flux goes almost without drums or percussions. There are just vocals and guitar or piano and this minimality is the whole secret of the release. It’s a completely different feeling to listen to The Life Of The World In Flux as to The Life Of The World To Come.
So don’t wait and get your mp3s over at thinkindie.com or your physical copy at Routh Trade (even though they are from Europe they deliver to America and all other countries as well). And don’t wait too long because the disc version is limited (and remember: if you order the LP version of The Life Of The World To Come at Rough Trade you nevertheless get The Life Of The World In Flux as a cd version).