Of Montreal
The Gay Parade



by Chris Jackson USER (177 Reviews)
November 23rd, 2005 | 15 replies | 10,012 views

Release Date: 1999 | Tracklist

4 of 6 thought this review was well written

Formed in the mid 90's, Of Montreal is one of the best pop bands that I have heard of. When I refer to the term pop music I don't mean bands like Blink-182 or Good Charlotte. Of Montreal is completely different from those bands so in case you were wondering now you know. This band has never gotten the credit they deserved. It's not like they were being overshadowed by any other bands, Of Montreal just don't appeal to a lot of listeners. I'll just say this, if you enjoy pop music, than get this album now.

Wow, what an album. Catchy guitar hooks, piano chords, keyboard synths, brass instruments, and xylophones. This album is heaven for fans who like quirky, upbeat, joyful pop music. Of Montreal is a pop band, but they blend together other slight influences of psychadelica, rock, funk, and lo-fi. This music is extremely catchy, you will be singing these songs in your head for weeks, maybe even months. The melodies are simple yet sophisticated. There is always something new going on in these songs, none of them sound the same and they all stand out. The Gay Parade can go from a whimsical pop tune, to a more heavy guitar, rock influenced song, to a serious ballad, all the way over to a song dominated by brass instruments. The Gay Parade is just pure fun, and it is an interesting listen no matter how many times you listen to it.

The best part about this album is the instruments. Of Montreal uses a very wide variety, and sometimes the instruments can be so complex you don't know what there using. Guitars, keyboards, brass instruments, piano's, xylophones, harmonica's, and accordians all play a role on this album. The guitar plays the main role. The guitar can go from soft, gentle strums, over to catchy riffs. The keyboards also show up in just about every song creating a quirky sound that adds on sugary effects. The brass instruments appear frequently and they escpecially play a huge role in The March Of The Gay Parade and Fun Loving Nun. As for the other instruments they all show up occasionaly, but they are also recognized enough to be considered a slight factor in the album. The instruments are superb and Of Montreal mixes it up so much that no two songs sound the same.

Kevin Barnes vocal delivery is excellent. It fits the album perfectly and it is a perfect blend with the poppy, upbeat nature of The Gay Parade. His voice is high-pitched, quirky, fun, joyful, and Barnes seems like he doesn't have a care in the world. His playful voice is very cheerful and happy, while this can annoy me at times it usually works perfectly with the albums upbeat nature. Kevin Barnes is an underated vocalist and songwriter. His vocals are superb here and although they can get tedious at times they work well with the musical style of The Gay Parade.

These songs are all extremely catchy and very well done. These melodies are all so very catchy. It is amazing that I can listen to this one night, wake up the next morning and still have the same song stuck in my head. Songs like Fun Loving Nun and Tulip Baroo just never get old, they have the same feeling no matter how many times you listen to them. Most of these tracks range from two to three and a half minutes long. This is a good thing because while some of these songs can be short and sweet the longer tracks are usually more downbeat and mellow. The Gay Parade is upbeat and poppy for the most part, but there are a few exceptions. Nickee Coco And The Invisible Tree, and Jacques Lamure is a perfect example, they are both filled with different sounds and instruments but they are still mellow and more dreary. While most of these songs are filled with quirky, playful melodies there are a few softer tracks.

Overall this is one of my favorite pop albums I have ever owned. This is pure excellence from beginning to end. Catchy guitar hooks, keyboard synths and a load of over various instruments are used to create catchy hooks and melodies. This album is very playful, upbeat, and care-free so I will warn you that this album can get annoying if you don't know what you're getting into. Aside from that I can't see what else is wrong with this album. No two songs sound the same, Of Montreal is constantly mixing things up to keep things interesting. I would say that if you're a fan of sugary pop music than there is no better album. If you're new to pop music than you have nothing to lose. Although The Gay Parade is hard to listen to at times it is definately worth it. Please do yourself a favor and give a few tracks a listen, after all they will be stuck in your head for the rest of the day, or maybe even a week.

Overall Rating : 4.5/5

Pros: Catchy Songs // Wide Variety Of Instruments // Variety // No Bad Tracks

Cons: Hard to listen to at times // Can be annoying depending on what mood I'm in

Recommended Tracks: Fun Loving Nun // Neat Little Domestic Life // The Miniture Philosopher // My Favorite Boxer

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user ratings (123)

Comments:Add a Comment 
November 23rd 2005


Album Rating: 4.5

I'm going to edit this so just give me a few minutes.

Done, comments are wanted badly, weather they are positive or negative or if they relate to the album or band. This Message Edited On 11.23.05

November 23rd 2005


I wish I could write reviews as well as you can. :thumb:

Storm In A Teacup
November 23rd 2005


This is a very well-written review Zebra, you're so much better than me and most of the reviewers on here.

While I generally don't like this type of music really, there are a couple of songs on this that are pretty good.

(Hey, that was a Zebra kinda post:p)

November 23rd 2005


This is probably one of their best albums, from the few that I have heard or listened to in full.

November 24th 2005


these guys seem different, i'll need to get some of their stuff

November 24th 2005


Their album with the rediculously long title is the best of theirs.

November 24th 2005


Album Rating: 4.5

I think that would be "Coquelicot Asleep In The Poppies." It's an amazing album, I would rank it about the same as The Gay Parade.

With Decay
June 2nd 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

I LOVE this album!

June 27th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Great review. This album is magnificent. I just got it yesterday and have only listened to it once but I still love it. It's strange that more people don't know this band. Kevin Barnes is an incredible writer. How does he come up with those endless, catchy melodies? Of Montreal blow me away in general. The overall mood of this album, as you said, can put you off if you're in the wrong mood. But when you're in the right mood, it's such a perfect album.

September 3rd 2012


Album Rating: 5.0

so much fun
so much joy
so much wonderful love for

Digging: Devangelic - Resurrection Denied

Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2012


Take me with you gay pride parade

Digging: Armchairpolitician - Seven Segment Decoder

September 3rd 2012


Album Rating: 5.0

not gay pride parade dude just gay parade!

August 31st 2013


Album Rating: 5.0

"If you ever feel that in your life the moments of gaiety are too few, you can always come and visit us now that you know the way. And perhaps someday you'll be able to stay with us forever inside the Gay Parade."

Digging: Led Zeppelin - How the West Was Won

September 1st 2013


Album Rating: 5.0

yes baby

April 14th 2014


Album Rating: 4.5

he's not even gay lmao

Digging: Miami Vice - Palm Haze

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