The key to possibly ever appreciating It’s All Crazy! It’s All False! It’s All a Dream! It’s Alright is for you to forget everything you ever thought you may have known about mewithoutYou. The band has seemingly tossed out all traces of Fugazi and Slint, the angst-ridden bleating of Aaron Weiss, and the frenetic, post-core pacing of its songs, and yet this is still most assuredly a mewithoutYou record. Lyrically, Aaron seems more Franciscan than ever, choosing to balance the passion of Donne with the pastoral pictures of Whitman, while the music has mellowed and matured to a fresh, folk-friendly depth, not unlike a well-crafted batch of bourbon. One could easily attribute these shifts to the production hand of Daniel Smith (of Danielson fame), as layered percussion, mandolins, horns and keys make their way onto the record, but these organic changes sound totally unforced and are quite welcome. Admittedly, there are times when I miss the emotional, rip-out-my-heart-to-watch-it-bleed fury of Catch For Us The Foxes, but with examples like “The Angel of Death Came to David’s Room,” “Fig With a Bellyache,” and “Allah, Allah, Allah” on hand, you’d be hard-pressed to claim that mewithoutYou still doesn’t know how to create meaningful music.
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