A Mogwai score of a French film? I don’t need anymore details. I’m in. So forgive me for not knowing about the correlated film. The work is strong enough to stand on its own: a brilliant album, from start to finish. I can’t say that about alot of releases lately. Les Revenants literally brings me to tears at a certain point, and I’m not ashamed to fuckin’ admit it. While I was listening for the second time, all the way through, I suddenly felt like our generation has its own Beethovens. Please: I’m not putting anybody on pedestals here. I’m trying to say that listening to Mogwai on this record made me feel like we have our superhumans, our geniuses, our heroes, and they walk among us. It’s ironic I just typed that, as the film is apparently about people rising from the dead.
It may also be ironic then that the music gave me a sense of hope and contentment. They play strings and piano like a hard-core band (which these guys are and always will be – in more ways than one) but they can also be as delicate and acute as a seasoned quartet. I believe Les Revenants is clear evidence of that. The music is not all uplifting. There are tense moments too, moments of anxiety and seeming despair. One track in-particular gets to me, especially if I’m up late writing and the sun’s coming up. If I play it the damn song gets me every time. “Special N” (I wish I knew what that means) reminds me of exceptional long nights out dancing with my dear friends. It reminds me of times when a night turns into the next day, and the next, and we’re all still pumping our fists, getting down to the music together. Some of my greatest memories are of dancefloors all over the world with my close friends.
Now, “Special N” isn’t a club track obviously. But it’s difficult to describe a composition that sounds like sunshine. Oh, and it also has pretty strings, if that helps. The bottom line: This is a remarkable record. I’m surprised I haven’t read more about this album. I’ve been listening to it at least once a day for months. Mogwai has crafted a fantastic record, full of heartache and the greatest joy. Their journey is an intense on Les Revenants. I suggest you check it out. The vinyl sounds terrific too.
By: Michael Mercer