One of the most prolific indie rock bands of the decade, Joan Of Arc, released the most ambitious album of it’s career. The band’s latest release, “Oh Brother,” is a combination of four unfinished albums featuring four different ensembles and 14 musicians. The limited, vinyl-only release has just four songs, but each is about 20 minutes long.
Band leader and singer Tim Kinsella chose to release this as an all-instrumental record, a bold move for someone famous for his cryptic and often humorous lyrics. The album is incredibly diverse and expansive, which proves to be a disadvantage as the record sounds unorganized and chaotic at times.
Drummer Zach Hill’s abrasive drumming style shines on the first side of the album with Kinsella’s signature use of ambient sound and electronics. The band switches from a gentle acoustic groove to a loud, brash collage of random sounds, lending the album a spontaneous feel.
Kinsella brings in former band mates Victor Villareal and Nate Kinsella (both ex-members of indie rock band, Cap’n Jazz) to help the record. Their presence creates a sense of much needed energy for the album.
A song lasting as long as these do may seem like a challenge, let alone four of them. But with the time and patience, it’s a very interesting, extremely bold album that’s worth the time it takes to listen to.