8 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Adjectives describing Montreal's Ought—such as “nervous,” “jittery,” and “art school”—likely also bring to mind a number of bands from the revered 1978-1985 postpunk landscape. Ought still maintain an outsider status, probably due to their lack (so far) of anything resembling a quirky, three-minute anti-pop song. This debut is exciting, taut, unpredictable, and imploding with an edgy energy that seems rare these days (at least when bombast isn’t part of the equation). Tracks like “The Weather Song” thrill the most when a rocky rhythm suddenly yields to a fast-moving montage of enthusiastic electric piano pounding, snare bashing, and singer Tim Beeler all duking it out. Or when slow, dripping tunes like “Habit” feature Beeler drowsily warning: “I feel/a habit/I feel a habit forming” for the last two minutes, wrought with reluctance and zero satisfaction with the situation. The opening track (“Pleasant Heart”) and the closer (“Gemini”) are ferocious and furious, the former roiling with the epitome of clanging, postpunk angular-ness and the latter building from a restrained aggressiveness to all-out rage over its nearly seven minutes.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Adjectives describing Montreal's Ought—such as “nervous,” “jittery,” and “art school”—likely also bring to mind a number of bands from the revered 1978-1985 postpunk landscape. Ought still maintain an outsider status, probably due to their lack (so far) of anything resembling a quirky, three-minute anti-pop song. This debut is exciting, taut, unpredictable, and imploding with an edgy energy that seems rare these days (at least when bombast isn’t part of the equation). Tracks like “The Weather Song” thrill the most when a rocky rhythm suddenly yields to a fast-moving montage of enthusiastic electric piano pounding, snare bashing, and singer Tim Beeler all duking it out. Or when slow, dripping tunes like “Habit” feature Beeler drowsily warning: “I feel/a habit/I feel a habit forming” for the last two minutes, wrought with reluctance and zero satisfaction with the situation. The opening track (“Pleasant Heart”) and the closer (“Gemini”) are ferocious and furious, the former roiling with the epitome of clanging, postpunk angular-ness and the latter building from a restrained aggressiveness to all-out rage over its nearly seven minutes.

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