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Watch Me Disappear

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Album Review

On their fourth album, after a stunning success with One Crowded Hour, the Australian band Augie March returned with a mix of somewhat simplistic mainstream sounds and more darkly tinged numbers characteristic of some of their earlier works. The album opens with the title track, a slightly menacing piece with some sweeping overtones highly reminiscent of the Panics. "Pennywhistle" goes a bit more mainstream, but is structurally similar to a Bruce Springsteen song for much of the duration. For a period after "Pennywhistle," the album starts to get a little more pedestrian and a little more experimental at the same time — attempts at new rhythms that don't fit well with the vocals, experiments with additional, clashing bits of instrumentation that make the sound busy but not entirely complete. Towards the end, there's a stroke of a Dylan/Petty-styled romp in "The Glenorchy Bunyip," and another stab at a Panics' sound in the arrangements around "Dogsday" and "Lupus." The album ends in a fairly lackluster form with "The Devil in Me" and a sweeping string arrangement. Watch Me Disappear has its moments of brilliance, though the midsection is a bit gray. One can hope that in the future the band focuses more on the fuller, better-planned pieces like those at the beginning of the album.

Customer Reviews

Not their best

Not the best from the best Aussie band around. From the rocky title track which opens the album you can't help but feel disappointed especially considering Augie's last record opened with their Triple J fave 'One Crowded Hour'. First single 'Pennywhistle' is bright and breezy but ultimately forgetable. It's not until 'The Slant' that I remember fully why I love this band and Glenn Richards beguiling melodies and poetic words (in this instance over a beautiful picked descending chord progression) need teasing out and unpicking. I suggest you find 'Moo.. you bloody choir' , 'Strange Bird' or 'Sunset Studies' first but hell I'm just glad this is available over here as even their weakest record is way beyond most of what out there.

again, prodigious

without question, this is their most immediate, coherent and accessible record to date. here, AM have consolidated what makes them so great. they have condensed their wayward whims and unearthly flights of fancy into pristine, modern, cogent pop songs. now, that description may have had me once running for the hills, but, this unique band has progressed, with each record, defining, honing their sound to where it is now. they have never stopped learning from their past. they have never stayed still, but at the same time, have never lost the essence of what makes them so wonderful. this record hangs together far more solidly than their last effort, 'Moo...', which was a soft mess despite being home to some of their greatest individual compositions, and, at 40 odd minutes, is a tauter, leaner and fresher experience than they have ever delivered before. the lyrics are as sharp and beguiling as ever while Glenn's voice is full of teeth throughout. and while it might not compete in some minds with the general magnificence of their first two records, i don't think its fair to compare, when the music they are making is still this good. they've done it once with Strange Bird. you can't be expected to re-make the White Album (only slightly better) everyday!!! all in all, superlatively superior stuff for fans of great, great music.

Biography

Formed: 1996 in Melbourne, Australia

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Augie March formed in 1996 in Melbourne, Australia, where guitarist/singer/songwriter Glenn Richards, guitarist Adam Donovan, and drummer David E. Williams were attending college. The three grew up together in Shepparton, Victoria, Australia, but it wasn't until they reunited as friends during their college days that Richards, an English major, began writing songs and invited the other two to accompany him. Both Donovan and Williams were studying music and the two sought out bassist Edmond Ammendola,...
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Watch Me Disappear, Augie March
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