CD Review: MGMT Heads in a New, Tripped-Out Direction with Congratulations

Artist: MGMT

Album: Congratulations

Release Date: April 13

Rating (Skip, Stream, or Buy): Stream

Listen: Entire album streaming here.

While it certainly is no Oracular Spectacular, MGMT's sophomore effort plays up the band's obvious talent in an almost completely new way. Holding on to their psych-pop roots, core duo Andrew Vanwyngarden and Ben Goldwasser recorded alongside concert lineup members and infused tastes of five decades worth of rock 'n' roll--all while basically dismissing the catchiness that boosted the band to popularity. In fact, Congratulations departs from the megahit singles of the band's debut so significantly that it instead comes off more as one 44-minute-long experience. And while so-called-single "Flash Delirium" is jumpy and just a little schizophrenic (like its fittingly deranged Andreas Nilsson-directed music video), it only solidifies an impressive dedication to experimentation, revealing a respectable honesty. Following artistic vision isn't always the ticket to commercial success, but Congratulations is one musical drug trip this reviewer can respect.

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