The Besnard Lakes - Until In Excess, Imperceptible UFO

Album Reviews

There's no sudden dramatic departure from any of their previous work on LP number four, it's very much carrying along in a similar vein.



Label: Jagjaguwar
Released: 1st April 2013
Reviewer: Jack McKenna
Montreal's The Besnard Lakes are probably the kind of band you've heard a lot in passing, but have never set aside the time to dive in to. You'd be forgiven for not having done so; many of their songs clock in at six or seven minutes, and they don't bend themselves over to be accessible to the general public. But the brand of reverb-heavy shoegaze they've crafted out for themselves has not gone unnoticed. Twice nominated for the Polaris Music Prize - 2007's '…Are The Dark Horses' and 2010's '…Are The Roaring Night' - the husband-and-wife twosome of Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas have made an impressive run of things over the past decade. We now herald their return with the uniquely titled 'Until In Excess, Imperceptible UFO' and hope to fall in love all over again.

There's no sudden dramatic departure from any of their previous work on LP number four, it's very much carrying along in a similar vein. On each previous release they've hand one song that clearly lends itself towards being a single. In 2007 it was 'Devastation', in 2010 it was 'Albatross' and in 2013 its 'People of the Sticks', and the formula for the rest of the album generally remains the same. There's less riffs spread across the record than '...Are The Roaring Night' and the production isn't quite as clean, which works better with all the guitar effects they orchestrate throughout, although album opener '46 Satires' sounds like something left on the cutting room floor of the last album.

It's not a record that will convert anyone who had previously dismissed these two Canadians, but it preaches a sermon that the present congregation will enjoy to their heart's content. From the pounding of 'The Specter' through the lullaby 'Catalina' to the intense ending and eventual fade of 'Alamgordo', it never lets up. It meets your expectations and assumptions head on without ever stretching itself to be anything exponentially better than its predecessors. There doesn't seem to be any reason why it won't be a third Polaris nomination on the trot for The Besnard Lakes, but it'd be very surprising if this was the record that took the prize home.
Rating: 6/10
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