Damaged Goods

Menomena Is a Band in Ruins, and That's a Good Thing


I do so love their music so much that the mere thought of them ending band makes me very sad. I hope they can keep it up for another decade, and perhaps, become true friends with each other.
Great article

Majove 3 called, they want their band back.
This article is sparse on content and despite the fact that it is constantly asserting a sense of doom over the band's future, the author does not give one single example of why this doom is to be presumed (save one non-contextualized quote at the end). I have listened to Menomena since their first album and have listened to Mines 5 times through since I received it from Barsuk on Saturday . I think the author's take on the album falls short of representing the depth of emotion and human conditions the band is expressing. His highly constructive analysis flattens a multidimensional experience, which does a real disservice to the album's creators and potential listeners.
Surly there are criticisms to be made about the album and lots to talk about regarding differences between this and the other albums, but the author ignores these and instead goes for the most boring, stock theme of all, 'band drama' which even if explicated would surely not really be THAT dramatic...I mean has he met these guys?
The author's game of "is this a negative or cleverly positive review?" is really the point of his article, not Menomena or its new album mines.
Opening line:
From the article:
"But while they might buckle, they never break"

The general sense of doom you speak of is directly from the band itself. As for "has he met these guys?," I have, hence the quotes used in this article. While I'm sorry you think I flattened the Menomena listening experience and am playing a game with the readers—I'm not, my comments on the album are overwhelming positive, if not downright gushing ("wondrous to behold")—I wanted to write an article about the fascinating innerworkings of one of my favorite bands. Sorry you didn't see it that way.

@digdug Yup. The opening line is a paraphrased quote from the band itself.
A great read, though vague and depressing. I love me some Menomena.
Jeremy, this article is more an examination of the band's personal dynamic than a review of the album. The author mostly avoids critiquing the album because that's not the point. Though, he does clearly shine a positive light on the band and their latest offering. If this were intended to be an album review of Mines, I'd agree with you. However, I found it to be a very interesting and informative peek into the dynamic of the band and their unusual process. I knew they were a bit "dysfunctional" (I feel wrong using that word since their dysfunction produces such great music), but I had no idea just how much.
Woops, didn't see that the author already responded to Jeremy's comment. Makes my response unnecessary. Sorry.
eh, i appreciate ezra's and eric's responses to jeremy, but i don't really buy them. to my mind, it seems like this article is trying to add drama and intrigue to a very wholesome and relatively transparent group of dudes (whom i have also met, and daresay i know two of them somewhat well). yes, their process is kind of odd, but it must be admitted that a cursory glance or even skimming of this article is going to produce one (or maybe two) thoughts in a reader's mind: menomena is breaking up; menomena is fucked up. again, why not deal with the obvious lack of brent on the album and the nearly simultaneous release of ramona falls album rather than talk about how F-ed up the author perceives them to be? this article is, as jeremy states, "a real disservice to the album's creators and potential listeners." i miss portland, but i don't miss portland's overload of cynicism and irony peddled so well by the mercury!
The band's general sense of gloom, doom and despair is often times amusing. Depeche Mode often carries that sense with them even at the top of the charts. I did notice Brent seemed subdued on this album in some ways and commented on that in my own column when I reviewed it. Bands do change, writing ebbs and flows, and compromises have to be made--gee sounds like any relationship. However, things aren't always what they seem. Having interviewed quite a few artists, including Brent, I have to say that these guys are amazingly transparent. It's refreshing. At one time you didn't know how dysfunctional a band was until it was over and they were writing their memoirs with acid pen. The article was very well written and I enjoyed it.
Hope you're happy now.
Check http://www.spinner.com/interface/menomena/… and forward to 1:53, then watch at 2:23.