56.) Wolf Parade - Apologies to the Queen Mary (2005)
I have been staring at this Wolf Parade entry for the better part of a week and for some reason I can't fucking write it. I don't know why. I just have nothing to say. I like Apologies to the Queen Mary. There were only 55 records released in the past ten years that I like more than Apologies to the Queen Mary, yet I've been a drawing a week-long blank on what to say about it.
Maybe this will be fun - here's what I remember. Apologies to the Queen Mary came to the us in 2005 riding a wave of hype as big as an Arcade Fire. They had a nice EP prior to it and a lot of those songs were going to show up on the full length. They were from Canada and were, apparently, friends with the aforementioned Arcade Fire who had just finished taking over the world (or at least the small corner of it which is owned by people in tight jeans) a few months earlier. So, inevitably they were compared to Arcade Fire which was stupid because they were a different band, but then they were compared to a lot of bands. Great bands like the Pixies and Modest Mouse. I agreed with the latter but not so much the former.
Wolf Parade have two leaders (which maybe in some way means they have no leader) named Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner. They work really well together. One is considered a bit more experimental of the two - that would be Spencer Krug even though it's a Krug track - "Grounds For Divorce" - that is the catchiest one on Apologies to the Queen Mary. A lot of people called them the indie rock Lennon and McCartney which is another stupid and ill-advised comparison, but what can you do?
I don't know why I don't remember much from the time I spent with this record apart from I didn't spend much time with it initially. In fact, I heard it thought "OK" shelved it and didn't revisit it until 2007 when I was blown away by Krug's other band Sunset Rubdown's second record Random Spirit Lover . Then I fell in love with Apologies to the Queen Mary, which, as it would turn out, I would end up loving more than Random Spirit Lover. Is anyone following this?
Anyway, Apologies is a ramshackle affair and it ebbs and flows for sure - it's got that kitchen sink mentality that can be either really interesting or incredibly off-putting - here it's almost always positive. And...the songs are good. I really enjoy listening to them.
So, it's a great record. One of the best of the decade for sure.
Posted by Pat Driscoll