Review Summary: The mood and atmosphere that Fuck Off attempts to convey gets completely lost in the production and vocals.
Many bands strive to create an album full of beautiful textures and euphoric atmospheres. Whether it be progressive music or post rock, this style of music proves to be extremely tough to pull off without either sounding overproduced or too polished. Usually with a record that reflects a polished sound the common critique is that it sounds too sparkly or overblown. However, records like these also warrant the positive about how the record showcases fantastic production. Unfortunately, Thee Silver Mount Zion's Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light On Everything
serves as a record that got both of these aspects wrong. It suffers from recurring sections of poor production and often tries to take the album to levels in which the production simply can not handle. Essentially it's raw, experimental post rock that's incredibly hard to swallow.
The result of this poor production means that there is often way too much going on in a single song for its own good. At many points the record's sound gives the impression that one too many guitars are being played at once and it unfortunately doesn't sound organic or natural. A good portion of "Fuck Off Get Free (For The Island Of Montreal)" features this flaw and despite the latter half of the song being fantastic due to some good guitar work and fairly abundant good vocals, the first half isn't enjoyable to listen to due to the annoying sound of the guitar riffs. It also doesn't help that the vocals that includes Godspeed You! Black Emperor alum, Efrim Menuck, is not very competent. Efrim sounds almost exactly like Arcade Fire's lead singer, but their vocalist really makes his voice work with their indie sound. Despite some good female vocals spread out along the way, most of the sections that contain vocals completely ruins whatever mood song attempts convey. Rest assured, that mood and atmosphere gets completely lost in the mix.
Everything said above may seem overwhelmingly harsh to some people. The album features sections that are actually quite enjoyable. Despite the typically lackluster vocals, "What We Loved Was Not Enough" serves as the record's high point. It has some great guitar work in the first half of the song and "Rains Thru The Roof Of Thee Grande Ballroom" is simply a fantastic song throughout because of some ominous drumming and creepy effects in the background. However, these songs don't save the record because over half of it displays all of the flaws mentioned above and it makes for a generally unenjoyable listen. There are plenty of albums with raw production and some of those include Eidolon
by Rishloo and Leitmotif
by Dredg. The difference between those albums and this album is that both of them known their limits. The band does not take their music to a level in which it can not go. Unfortunately, this record suffers from this aspect almost all the way across the board.