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Friday, June 23, 2017
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My Morning Jacket: 'Circuital' - 5 out of 5 stars

Tags: Music Reviews

To those who aren't familiar with the band My Morning Jacket, it is an authentic American rock and roll group. I emphasize the word "authentic" because through its recording style and musical goals, MMJ rises above most of the commercially sculpted bands of mainstream music. The sound of MMJ's newest album, Circuital, is a pure, fundamental display of rock — one that was accomplished without sacrificing any originality.

For recording the new album, the band decided to go without the bells and whistles that were used in the past. The classy Manhattan studio used to record MMJ's last album, Evil Urges, was dropped in favor of a more homey setting, which the band found in a local Kentucky church's gym (no, I'm not kidding).

Circuital starts out with "Victory Dance," a mellow energy builder that leads into the title track. In typical MMJ style, a wide variety of musical instruments are employed throughout the album, giving the band the sound that has gained them so many fans.

"Holdin On To Black Metal" is arguably the grooviest tune on the album, adding a heavy funk element through the use of various guitar wah filters as well as a group of female background vocalists that belt out a wall of sound.

The track "First Light" uses a heavy fuzz filter and tambourine to convey an early '60s-era rock sound that is truly reminiscent of The Beatles.

To wrap all of this up, MMJ closes the album out with "Movin Away," a somber track that brings the mellow feel on which the album started.

This album is a wonderful piece of work by a band that both truly cares about authentically crafting the music they put out and has creative control to successfully do so.

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