Half Notes: Modest Mouse – Good News For People Who Love Bad News (2004)

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by Tom Johnson

This is one of the few instances where a song by a very odd band got huge, was virtually everywhere, and still I loved every second of it. “Float On” couldn’t be ignored, and I don’t know why you’d want to ignore it anyway. (And so what if it lifts the entire structure of the chorus from James’ “She’s A Star.” That’s also a great song.) And if you somehow didn’t hear this, you surely saw/heard the Nissan Sienna commercial that used The Moon And Antarctica‘s “Gravity Rides Everything.” It, too, was everywhere for several months. It’d be easy to write off Modest Mouse as hype, but this, again, is one of those rare instances where the album is so endearingly odd, so sweetly twisted, that it’s impossible to hate, even if it does seem convoluted and confusing at first. With familiarity, the album’s gruff exterior and singer Isaac Brock’s drunken shout reveals a delicate, strange little heart.

‘Half Notes’ are quick-take thoughts on music from Something Else! Reviews, presented whenever the mood strikes us.

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