Music Review: MGMT, "MGMT"

We should have seen this coming.

Sure, you might have caught hints of MGMT’s impending turn toward psychedelic music on its well-received breakthrough album, “Oracular Spectacular,” in 2010. If not, it was definitely right there in front of us three years later on the much less popular “Congratulations.”

If you still were holding out hope MGMT would turn into more of a funky pop act after listening to its debut album, you’re surely going to be disappointed by “MGMT.”

The band’s self-titled album is void of any pop sensabilities MGMT still was hanging on to. In their place is a full commitment to the whole psychedelic act.

MGMT fails to capitalize on the change in style. Many of the songs, including “A Good Sadness” and “Astro-Mancy,” are muddled with too many layers of sound.

The Flaming Lips is a psychedelic rock band that has found success in the genre. It knows when to pull back just enough to keep its songs from going completely out of control.

You can hear MGMT borrowing from the playbooks of The Flaming Lips and David Bowie on this album. The trippy music is there along with several references to outer space. Unfortunately, it’s buried way too deep within the songs to be effective.

“Mystery Disease” is one of the few tracks on the album that was spared the excess, keeping it from sounding like a bunch of noise.

The bursts of pop on MGMT’s debut album made the band’s psychedelic music so much more accessible. This album could have used the same treatment.

Rating: One star

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