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Mountain Battles (Bonus Track Version)

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Editors’ Notes

The Breeders first album in six years, since 2002’s delightfully offhanded Title TK, works with quick efficiency and a devotion to raw, weird intimacy. The Deal sisters, Kelley and Kim, work in simpatico rhythms and harmonies that often defy outward logic but adhere to an intrinsic beauty that sounds as deliberate as it does accidental; the rough edges are smoother than they initially appear. The sisters harmonize in German for “German Studies,” play straight Spanish nightclub pop for “Regalame Esta Noche,” embrace French pop for “Night of Joy,” jam out minimalist 1977 punk for “It’s the Law” and prepare for lift-off with the primitive Brian Eno-sounding cheap synthesizers of the title track. The songs happen quickly: 13 in just under 37 minutes. Several lean exercises nearly pass unnoticed as their brevity and stubborn quietness do not draw attention to themselves. “Overglazed” begins with a whisper. “Istanbul” works up to a groggy beat that walks into the positively upbeat “Walk It Off” where there’s nearly a cocky swagger. Plenty of little moments that bear frequent repeating.

Customer Reviews

Breeders still rockin

As a fan of the pixies since my high school days in the early 90's, I have always watched both Kim Deal and Frank Black with a nostalgia for what was. In 2002 when the Breeders put out Title TK, it caught me off guard and made me appreciate Kim in her own post-pixies genius. This album is no exception. If you need you music spoon-fed to you or if you just want the 2008 version of Cannonball, you may not get it (although you may like Walk it Off). If you live and breathe by your music for its integrity and artistic merit, buy it now. I love this album. Kim and Kelley Deal never cease to amaze me. It feels like 1992 again for about 35 minutes. Some of you will know what I mean.

Not entirely uphill

To answer one reviewer, yes, the cover is reminicent of "Death to..." but Kim and Charles (Pixies) were on the same label (4AD) and were either required to use or were fond of the same cover artists (V23). I don't blame them and actually like most covers 4AD released. Now for the music. I don't think there's a greatly different sound here than on their earlier albums but if there were it wouldn't be the same band. That said, there are Minor experimentations that add a little fun to the playlist (Istanbul, German Studies and the bonus German Demonstration, Bang On) The usual rhythm guitar driven rockers (Overglazed, Walk It Off, It's the Love, No Way) The sad slow songs with a hint of country (Here No More, Regalame Esta Noche) and the haunted bunch (Night of Joy, Were Gonna Rise). I've always been a fan of the haunted and the rockers (I Bleed, Where is My Mind, Invisible Man, Into the White, Flipside) and always thought Kelly made a great addition as a lead. There's not much lead here but the songs don't suffer greatly for it. In all I think this is the album that should have followed Last Splash. A very fun listen for Breeder's fans. Favorites in order of most liked: Night of Joy German Studies Walk It Off Overglazed Istanbul

Still rockin', still a little weird

"Mountain Battles" continues the direction that the Breeders started on with their last album, "Title TK." Those looking for a new "Cannonball" will be disappointed, but there's some great stuff on this album. "Walk It Off" and "It's The Love" are awesome lo-fi rockers, while "Night of Joy" has a wonderfully eerie vibe to it.

Biography

Formed: 1988 in Dayton, OH

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

One of alternative rock's most promising — and frustrating — bands, the Breeders were conceived initially as a way for Pixies bassist Kim Deal and Throwing Muses guitarist Tanya Donelly to let out some suppressed creative energy and to take a break from being the second bananas in each of their main bands. Deal and Donelly both played guitar, leaving bass for Josephine Wiggs of Perfect Disaster. Taking their name from the group Deal led with her twin sister, Kelley, in their teens, the...
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