My Morning Jacket / Circuital


Circuital is the sixth album by My Morning Jacket. It was released on May 31, 2011, receiving mainly positive reviews.

For six weeks, leading up to April 12 2011, the band released free downloads of tracks recorded at their shows at New York’s Terminal 5 in October 2010. The final free download was the new album’s title track.

“Outta My System” is a rejected musical idea that Jim James wrote for Dr. Teeth & The Electric Mayhem in the upcoming Muppets film.

The album debuted at #5 on the Billboard 200, selling 55,000. This is the band’s highest ranking, beating Evil Urges, which debuted at #9.

The Analysis:

Victory Dance—-From the onset, this set is as eccentric and resplendent as you would expect it to be. The music swells and wraps itself around you, as Jim delivers his vocal you are swathed in a huge warm feeling and comfortable numbness. This opening track is full of nice experimental sounds and as electic as anything the band has produced up until now….this is brilliant. The track has a nice building feeling to it that never eclipses the vocal….leaving you panting by the end….this is magnificent!!!!

Circuital—-Wonderful from the very first few notes. you can tell even from the first listen that you are in for a treat. When Jim sings he reminds me of so many classic singers…this is a STELLAR vocal…crystal clear and full of emotive words and phrases that make you think of yourself and your life and what you have done with it. musically, the song is full of classic Jacket movements….as the song ebbs and flows, there is a comfortable folk feel to the whole thing while still managing to really come alive at times and bathe you in huge spotlights of electricity. This is fantastic!!!!

The Day Is Coming—-Full of magnificent swells of music and a gentle intro vocal chorus that makes you feel warm and sunny, this is just what I needed today….Jim manages to stay in the very front of the mix, despite the really present heavy drumming and the rather erratic guitar. This is incredible…I have read some really mixed reviews of this release….I think some people just don’t get the eccentricity of the band. I would kill to be at Bonaroo……OMG…..this is wonderful!!!!

Wonderful [The Way I Feel]—-This has nice strings, gentle acoustic guitars….a vocal that will rip your heart out and an atmosphere that leaves you in a messy heap on the floor. I have rarely heard such a clear and magnificent vocal……you catch every word and every pained expression that is transmitted through your headphones….Gosh…this just became a very favorite song of mine……!!!!!

Outta My System—-WOW!!!! I love this….even from the first listen this became another favorite track of mine. This has nice elements of the Monsters record….there is a nice overlay on the vocal that seems as if there are three people singing all at the same time. This is just incredible…..the music swells so nicely….giving you an urge to dance around like a fool in your living room…this is just magnificent. I can’t ever get enough of this band.

Hold On To Black Metal—-I have read many, many people pan this particular track on this release. To me, this is the most accessible and radio friendly track this band has ever made. This is laden with some fantastic lyrics….words that make you think and ponder the meaning of the song. the track has what sounds like a children’s choir in the backdrop that rounds out and makes this incredible for me. I have no care or concern for what others say, I love this track. Fabulous!!!!

First Light—-This is in such contrast from the previous track…..but also amazingly radio friendly and very reminiscent of Monsters Of Folk. I hear the influence of this band all over this record….I’m really not a ‘jam band’ fan…which Jacket is revered as by many people….but the experimental side of this band always managed to suck me in. This is so much more accessible and easy to listen to…I can’t turn away…even if I want to….just incredible…the huge crash of the drums are fantastic…the horns are remarkable and the vocal, as always, is perfect!

You Wanna Freak Out—-Another of those remarkable songs that manage to combine a folk sound with a slight electricity…resulting in a classic jacket track. I can’t listen to this record enough….I literally love this band to death. I feel like it was so worth the wait for this release…but pray the next one is not as far in the future. Jim makes me shiver with his soaring and perfect voice…and the band…going off on electric tangents make me smile into tomorrow morning!!!!

Slow Slow Tune—-This is incredible….not as slow as the title would imply, this has a soulful groove to it that surprised even me. This is wonderful…the bass guitar and the ever-present drums accompany Jim and a back drop female vocal to a stellar result. this is another favorite of mine…sounding like a champion on top of the earth…this is wonderful!!!!

Movin’ Away—-Ending the release with the same magnificence that it began with, for me the selling point on this track is the vocal. even though musically this is pretty incredible, Jim manages to soar with his voice even more than i have ever heard him before with his ‘home band’. This is an incredible closer…strong and committed with a nice slight Country twang……this is a keeper.

**** 1/2 out of 5


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