Mum - Yesterday Was Dramatic, Today Was OK

by Bob Coyne Rating: Release Date:2008-05-26

Mum are two men and two women (twins, actually) from Iceland who seem out to prove that not every musician in their country is somewhat insane. Perfectly ordinary (or so they'd like us to believe), mum makes perfectly... well, perfect songs constructed from electronic melodies and rhythms: think Looper as played by Aphex Twin, or the Close Encounters theme music as re-imagined by Neutral Milk Hotel. Yesterday was Dramatic--Today is OK is 15-songs-strong of music of indescribable wonder; while other artists plum the depths of love, mum somehow put together "I'm 9 Today", with all of the joy and curiosity, simplicity and burgeoning complexity that the subject demands. The companion pieces "Asleep on a Train" and "Awake on a Train" are triumphantly recognisable as such, and "Slow Bicycle" is the musical equivalent of American Beauty's shopping bag blowing in the wind. Though they might protest at the compliment, múm are very special indeed: that rare group possessed of the ability to find perfect beauty in the mundane--and to reveal it to the rest of us. -Randy Silver

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