Sleepytime Gorilla Museum

In Glorious Times
The End Records

Every music lover has a line beyond which material that had been intriguing becomes self-indulgent. On In Glorious Times, the Museum members don't just cross this line; they flip back and forth over it like Carly Patterson on angel dust, daring listeners to decide from one moment to the next whether a given song constitutes artistic brilliance or the equivalent of an overflowing colostomy bag.

The disc starts with "The Companions," a rock-operatic melodrama that devolves into chaos — and turns out to be one of the more accessible tracks. "Helpless Corpses Enactment," an excursion into artsy black metal that finds lead singer Nils Frykdahl in full froth, and "Puppet Show," which is bellowed by what sounds like a cathedral full of monks on a Dark Ages kick, display a persistently quicksilver temperament. As for "The Widening Eye," it switches tempos and time signatures so often that the players should have worn neck braces for their own protection.

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The disc is Glorious, all right — a glorious spectacle and a glorious mess.

 
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