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TV on the Radio - Return to Cookie Mountain [U.S.] (Cover Artwork)

TV on the Radio

TV on the Radio: Return to Cookie Mountain [U.S.]Return to Cookie Mountain [U.S.] (2006)
Universal Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:


Contributed by: ConsequentialBanditryConsequentialBanditry
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Brooklyn's own TV on the Radio is back with a new album, their first with a major label. Fresh from their Shortlist Award-winning debut Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes, this new album expands upon the ideas found on that release. Demos and leaked versions have been all over the Internet for nea.
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Brooklyn's own TV on the Radio is back with a new album, their first with a major label. Fresh from their Shortlist Award-winning debut Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes, this new album expands upon the ideas found on that release. Demos and leaked versions have been all over the Internet for nearly a year, but the record's official U.S. release was not until September 12. 4AD Records released it around the rest of the world on July 6, 2006. The record has been lauded in the press prior to its release, and for good reason.

It is absolutely impossible to pigeonhole the band into any specific genre. Now, one may say that often, but rarely is it ever true. TV on the Radio mix shoegaze, hip-hop, ambience, alternative rock, and spiritual music into one relentless blend that does not stop. The band is a longtime darling of the indie rock community, but this record could be their breakout.

Each track develops a unique mood using texture and production. The band is notorious for using such techniques to further the mood of the music which, in essence, makes them true artists. Vocalist and frontman Tunde Adebimpe has a background in art, as he is an avid painter and an animator on the MTV show "Celebrity Deathmatch."

TV on the Radio has consistently grappled with politics in its songs, and this release is no exception. Post-9/11 anxiety pervades the record, as exemplified in the song "Province:" "Suddenly, all your history's ablaze / Try to breathe as the world disintegrates." Notable icon David Bowie lends backup vocals to this urgent track.

Bowie's been a source of major support to the band since 2003, when founding member David Sitek sold him a painting, as well as giving Bowie some of the band's earliest recordings. Bowie has advised them on everything from what to do with record executives to how to release a one-off track recorded in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

The lead single, "Wolf Like Me" features fuzzy bass, shimmering guitars, and galloping drums, as well as Adebimpe's and backup Kyp Malone's eerie swirling vocals. As they build up into a fuzzing headtrip, it all disappears into light drums and instrumentation, with Adebimpe's vocals more audible than ever. Suddenly, the fuzz is back, and the track reaches the climax with both parts of the song (soft and loud) vying for supremacy.

The one problem with the record is that it may be too overwhelming and too much for the casual listener. "Musos" (critics, musicians, et. al.) will not have a problem, but this record may go over the average person's head. Unless you own amazing stereo speakers and/or excellent headphones, you are bound to miss something. I hope that this will not hurt record sales, which would marginalize this diamond in the rough of the music industry.

The U.S. release features three bonus tracks, including a remix of "Hours" by El-P and two B-sides from the single for "Wolf Like Me."

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
Weezer - PinkertonThe Flaming Lips - At War with the MysticsThe Weakerthans - Reconstruction SiteLagwagon - BlazeThe Blood Brothers - Burn Piano Island, BurnCursive - The Ugly OrganThe Weakerthans - Reunion TourThe Flaming Lips - The Soft BulletinBright Eyes - Lifted or The Story Is In The Soil, Keep Your Ear To The GroundDeath From Above 1979 - You're A Woman, I'm A Machine

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
hessler (January 10, 2011)

The best.

Anonymous (October 12, 2006)

the album is groovy as hell.
you, mr. record reviewer, are not.
work on your structure. what are you, in fifth grade?

Jesse (October 11, 2006)

No idea where you can get it but I read somewhere in an interview (Pitchfork, I think?) about their first album.

Anonymous (October 11, 2006)

Half a star short, methinks. Top 5 of 2006, without question.

GreenVandal (October 9, 2006)

I would say your in the minority actually Mr. Zackass.

Not-To-Regret (October 9, 2006)

Listen to what you will, this is not for everyone. I will say that it is alot more focused than the other 2 releases I've heard by them.

indie_is_better_than_punk (October 9, 2006)

very good album. very, very good.

Zackass (October 9, 2006)

Not-To-Regret...you're an idiot. I listen to the Lawrence Arms, Ghost Mice, Paul Simon, Wu-Tang, and Regina Spektor. Showing you have a variety in musical tastes, doesn't make a band any better, or make you a better critic. Most of us are open-minded but can agree that TV on the Radio suuuucks.

Not-To-Regret (October 9, 2006)

"not really, its crap for assholes who think they are above everyone else and "get" it"

I hate people like this; I'm not boasting my credentials but I listen to everything from Choking Victim to Mobb Deep, open your fucking mind to some different and not immediately pleasing or catchy music. Some albums just don't grab you right away. For example, on the opposite side of the spectrum, I hated the new Lawrence Arms when I first heard it but I finally let it grow on me. (Although it lacks the emo/folky sound of Greatest Story and I still feel said album is better) Personally I try to do the same with this and other bands. I used to diss hard on the abrasive "indie" scene until I broadened my horizons over the past 2-3 years and have since discovered some amazing music.

GreenVandal (October 8, 2006)

"Desperate Youth wasn't their debut. They had an EP before that, and before that they put out a self-released LP."

Where can I buy this LP? And c'mon Jessie, don't be such an arrogant prick. No one counts EP's as proper debuts anymore and you know he probably meant debut LP. No reason to play hipster-er than though here.

Anonymous (October 8, 2006)

Wow.

Jesse (October 8, 2006)

Desperate Youth wasn't their debut. They had an EP before that, and before that they put out a self-released LP.

Anonymous (October 8, 2006)

boy I am stupid, I dont like this

LevitateMe (October 8, 2006)

I like indie more than punk these days, but this albums sucks.

fritobandito (October 7, 2006)

easily a top five album of 2006 for me.

Anonymous (October 7, 2006)

Their first LP had some great ideas but it's a really flawed album. After about three songs it all bleeds together into one big repetitive drone.

Return to Cookie Mountain is much more dynamic and is far superior for it.

GreenVandal (October 6, 2006)

Love this album. "Hours" is probably my favorite song on it. I really don't see what is so "difficult" about this. It is far more accesible than "Desperate Youth...". It just has alot more rhythm and a much fuller sound.

And saying they are unclassifiable is totally accurate. Everyone classify's them as a "rock" band but I don't really see how you could do that. They are all over the place all the time. Love it.

benz (October 6, 2006)

real good cd.

-benz

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

It is absolutely impossible to pigeonhole the band into any specific genre

not really, its crap for assholes who think they are above everyone else and "get" it

gladimnotemo (October 6, 2006)

"but this record may go over the average person’s head. Unless"

LOL.

PretentiousLikePitchfork (October 6, 2006)

anyone else think this is a ridiculously stupid title? good thing the album is all types of solid.

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

This improves on Desperate Youth in every way possible.

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

One of the top 5 albums of the year, hands down. I think it's absolutely amazing.

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

Score is for their ability to jump through hoops of fire

Godfather (October 6, 2006)
Godfather (October 6, 2006)

score is for their lettermam performance

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9SC_NNEByA

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

i got a copy of this last week. gave it a couple of shots spread out through the week and i can honsetly say that i do not like this band. it was even annoying as background music while i was talking to someone in the car

leecorsoisapenis (October 6, 2006)

"Score is for "Wolf Like Me", a song that I think most readers of the 'org would enjoy."

I totally agree. That song is worth the price of the album alone, and I think anyone on this site would enjoy. The rest of the album is great, but kind of hard to get into.

Jim

Anonymous (October 6, 2006)

looking forward to it, I really liked desperate youth

Cos (October 6, 2006)

Score is for "Wolf Like Me", a song that I think most readers of the 'org would enjoy.

The rest of the album.... is difficult. Rewarding, but difficult
Gonna teach you things that'll blow your mind
--Cos

youwinalemon (October 6, 2006)

"should get nothing higher than an 8"
Disagreed. Disagreed so hard.

Totally worth the hype.

testiclese (October 6, 2006)

did these guys take the name of the album from super mario world

Not-To-Regret (October 6, 2006)

Aquired taste, many will knock it. I like these guys but they're not really accessible and somewhat hard to listen to. This doesn't make it into the CD player that much, but I respect their craft. On the other hand, the new Beck CD/DVD/Stickerbook is great.

danperrone (October 6, 2006)

yes, very accurate review...should get nothing higher than an 8...as a whole it could be better than desperate youth but it doesn't have that same utterly amazing feel that it had...na mean

BrendanKelly (October 6, 2006)

where's da cookiz? oh yezz, that's right. they don't gotz none up in diz place. yeaz that's rite broz. A

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