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Of Montreal: Controller Sphere

Polyvinyl

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The third installment in Of Montreal's trilogy of indulgence, Controller Sphere, marks the end of a long examination of leader Kevin Barnes' most hedonistic headspaces. "Black Lion Massacre" opens the disc with dark blasts of violence and noise, which becomes a cathartic experience that underscores the atonement of "Funkt Sass vs. the Root Plume." There's a Bowie-esque "Major Tom" quality to "Funkt," but this time the traveler is easing his way back down to earth. A defined concept is never forced, and when Barnes switches gears to become the wooting sexual dynamo in "L'age D'or," the grotesque factor is minimal. Sonically, the EP's range of avant-garde funk, glowing pop and intricate sound design is similar to what the group delivered with False Priest, but there's a feeling of transcendence here, as though these songs are just a step along the way to something much more evolved. (4 out of 5 stars)

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