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Free All The Monsters

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Bats

Free All The Monsters

12" LP

Availability: In stock

$15.99

Quick Overview

The story of The Bats begins in 1982 in Christchurch, New Zealand, when guitarist, vocalist and chief songwriter Robert Scott (The Clean) teamed up with bassist Paul Kean (Toy Love), guitarist Kaye Woodward and drummer Malcolm Grant (The Builders). Over the next 30 years, the beloved indie-pop four-piece produced a wealth of classic releases three EPs, seven albums and a pair of retrospective collections garnering gushing reviews from every corner of the music press and amassing fans and friends around the world. The latest chapter of The Bats story was recorded at Seacliff, a former asylum in the grand Victorian style just outside Dunedin, and masterfully produced by Dale Cotton (HDU, The Clean, Dimmer). It is filled with a manic and sophisticated pop charm; the band is in top form and delivers some of their strongest songs to date, from the melodic, catchy title track to the psychedelic thrum of Space Junk to the lo-fi folk of Simpletons. Overflowing with cleverly crafted tunes, powerful and haunting guitars, delicate vocals and soaring instrumental passages, Free All the Monsters is sure to please longtime fans and win some new ones along the way.

Details

It’s hard to decide which is more impressive, that at the time of their 2011 album, Free All the Monsters, the Bats had been been a band for nearly 30 years (with the same four members!) or that they sound almost exactly the same as they did on their first recordings. Yes, the record is much cleaner, but all the hallmarks of the Bats' sound are there: the close-knit guitar interplay between Robert Scott and Kaye Woodward, the way the duo's vocals fit together like puzzle pieces, Paul Kean’s melodic basslines, and the tightly propulsive drumming of Malcolm Grant. It’s a warm and inviting sound that feels as fresh as it did when they first came up with it in the early '80s. The recording is a little slicker than usual this time out, but the extra layer of atmosphere only adds to the hazy power of the songs and gives Robert Scott’s yearning vocals a softer bed to lie upon. As with most Bats albums, there aren’t many tracks that stand out. Or maybe they all stand out. Either way, the album sticks together like a group of preschoolers holding hands while crossing a street on a field trip. The track list is a perfect blend of uptempo songs that bounce along happily (“Simpletons”) or moodily (“In the Subway”), classic Bats midtempo janglers (the title track, the beautifully sad “See Right Through Me”), slower songs that unspool gracefully (“On the Bank”), and the occasional surprise (like the instrumental “Canopy”). To say it’s exactly what you’d expect from a Bats record is not even remotely a criticism; instead, it is the highest praise possible. Unlike a band that just keeps repeating itself with quickly diminishing results, the Bats have managed to maintain a ridiculously high level of quality throughout their career, and Free All the Monsters is as good a record as they’ve ever made.

Additional Information

Artist Bats
Track Listing . Long Halls 4:27 2. Simpletons 3:56 3. Free All the Monsters 2:57 4. See Right Through Me 4:59 5. It's Not the Same 3:07 6. In the Subway 3:35 7. Fingers of Dawn 4:13 8. Spacejunk 4:47 9. On the Bank 3:49 10. Canopy 2:03 11. When the Day Comes 3:12 12. Getting Over You 1:53

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