Published Sep 14, 2011From their early beginnings as vaudevillian twee poppers straight through to their recent stabs at sexed-up indie funk, Athens, GA-based outfit Of Montreal have maintained an insanely varied breadth of work since starting up in the '90s. With that in mind, a new cassette box set compiling the group's studio albums will celebrate the eclectic output of leader Kevin Barnes and his revolving cast of collaborators.
Joyful Noise will package all ten of the group's albums, from 1997's Cherry Peel to last year's Exclaim!-approved False Priest, on the analog format. It will hit shelves October 25. The cassettes come packaged in a fancy wooden box silk-screened with original artwork from David Barnes, Kevin's brother.
While audio tape enthusiasts will no doubt get a kick out of the nostalgic package, bandleader Barnes revealed that, while stoked that the box set exists, he doesn't quite get the allure of the item.
"I can understand the cassette thing, but I don't really feel that connected to it," he told Pitchfork. "Its like the CD for me -- I don't really like that tactile quality. Plastic just annoys me. It's easy to romanticize the past. That sort of goes hand in hand with vinyl as well. Having a connection to a physical object is really cool. At some point, people will be nostalgic about CDs, too. It's just human nature."
As for the band's future, Barnes is currently working on Of Montreal's next set, titled Paralytic Stalks. Reportedly influenced by 20th century classical composers like Krzysztof Penderecki and Charles Ives, Barnes believes the record could polarize people expecting another saucy electro-funk outing.
"It's a bit more esoteric, and it's probably not something everybody's going to like. I can see a lot of people having problems with it, but I can also see a lot of people loving it," he said. "There's still funky elements, and it's still very much a colorful pop record. But it goes into darker places."
Paralytic Stalks is expected sometime early next year.