OUGHT (Constellation Records)
Uncontrollable Urge, Vallens
$10+SC // casbahlounge.ca
Based in Montreal, Ought are a thrilling and adventurous quartet, delivering an earnest and exuberant post-punk: dextrous and exacting while bursting with propulsive and fluid energy, as indebted to Cap’n Jazz as to Talking Heads. The band shifts adeptly from sharp angles and stuttering counterpoint to softer edges and chiming flow, the instrumental interplay consistently whipsmart, supple and deceptively simple. Guitarist and vocalist Tim Darcy’s declarative, observational style ranges from stately, composed oratory to ragged, impassioned yelp, by turns wide-eyed and worried, but never submitting to cool irony or emotional detachment.
Ought’s April 2014 debut More Than Any Other Day brought the Montreal quartet sudden and universal critical acclaim, including high praise from Drowned in Sound, Exclaim, Rolling Stone, NME, and a Best New Music nod from Pitchfork. They have been riding a wave of furious productivity ever since, returning to the studio in the Spring of 2014 to re-record some updated versions of a couple of other older tunes – the resulting 4-song EP Once More With Feeling… hit store shelves October 28 2014 – and spending much of the past two years on the road, where their channeling of passion, politics and charisma consistently connects with and galvanizes each and every audience.
The band spent the first icy months of 2015 holed up in Montreal, writing and recording the new batch of songs that would see release that September as their sophomore LP, Sun Coming Down, once again met with widespread acclaim from critics and ecstatic audience reception on the road.