Melissa Auf der Maur's Out Of Our Minds travels through the heart
Melissa Auf der Maur
Out of Our Minds (MAdMMusic)
Beginning with an industrial heartbeat that evolves into a pumping instrumental opening track, the second solo album from Montreal’s Melissa Auf der Maur (who rebranded herself as MAdM) is the kind of record that provokes a heavy foot on the gas pedal. Produced by Auf der Maur herself with Jordon Zadorozny and Chris Goss, it possesses that non-record-company experimental feel. The title track offers lofty promises of a journey “out of our minds and into our hearts” where she invites the listener to sit by her fire with an alluring and sassy voice resembling that of a classy piano-lounge singer. Unfortunately, the former Hole bassist’s vocal potential is only hinted at throughout the album and is often replaced with high-pitched catchy, breathy and repetitive singing.
Though she repeats that “our hearts have been standing by for so long”, she doesn’t seem to take her own heart off standby. In the vocally powerful duet with Glenn Danzig, “Father’s Grave,” the lyrics “with all these tears inside/I’ll surely fall apart” come short of generating emotion; her still-sassy tone renders the mournful lyrics far-fetched.
Musically, the album remains interesting, with varied ambience including gothic whispers and a lone electric guitar standing out against a murmuring industrial backdrop. The sound of waves crashing onto the shore adds some feeling to catchy and repetitive lyrics in the foot-tapping song “Follow the Map”. A train blows its whistle as it chugs through our ears and introduces a basic drumbeat in “The Key”.
The track “22 Below” is the most powerful song. It begins with only Auf der Maur’s voice at full potential above an electric guitar being plucked. It probably has the most emotion of the entire record, yet is not strong enough to let the album deliver on its original promise of travelling through the heart.
Download This: “22 Below”