Secret Plot to Destroy the Entire Universe - Montauk
Record Label: Kat Kat Records
Release Date: December 22, 2011
“All the apathy we inhale in our lungs, we try to get by but we’re coming undone.”
Cue the lights and put the needle on the record. Montauk excels in a realm where there is a constant tension of feeling restless and exhausted. Cryptic song titles paired with an ambiguous band name, Secret Plot to Destroy the Entire Universe has a distinctness that penetrates the walls that hold Montauk together, which results in a powerful ode to the stagnant times in life.
At just a little over 10 minutes, Montauk opens with “Roswell, NM” which sets the tone for a theme of self-deprivation that can only make the listener feel compassion. It’s this empathy that SPTDTEU displays so well. The Philadelphia quintet doesn’t quite delve into the dramatic lyrics that are yelled by lead vocals Daniel Anderson, but that makes the lyrics feel infectious to the listener. One of the highlights of the album, “The Montauk Project”, has a slow baseline (bassist Mark Walsh) that plays puppeteer to a glimpse of a home and a dream that hasn’t quite reached fruition.
The instrumentation throughout Montauk is spectacular. Despite the short duration of the EP, the drums (Shawn Gorman), guitars (Chris Palmer/Ruben Polo/Daniel Anderson), and bass (Mark Walsh) are on point and portray a symphony to the lyrics provided. Each crescendo is built only to crash violently like waves on the beach. Anderson’s unique vocals vividly paint a grim picture that can only be akin to the colors of black, grey, and white. The only downside is production value, but that is quickly glossed over when given an official listen through. Montauk is the bitter cold of December, but as Anderson sings on the closing track “Freemasons”, “I’ve still got reasons to believe that this year might be better that the last”. We all can wait for the world to thaw, so that we can soon grow appendages in order to fulfill our personal dreams.