Skeletal Lamping is overflowing with musical detours and unexpected corner-turns within the framework (I use that term very loosely) of party-friendly surrealist pop. Sounding like an indie version of Prince performing in a rainbow-coloured disco held in a wind-tunnel with Panda Bear and Hunky Dory-era David Bowie, it’s softcore, pumping, reverb-laden, hardcore and rather brilliant fun. It’s also multi-textured and endlessly surprising, like how they drop in a gentle piano piece (Touched Something’s Hollow) followed immediately by the uptempo An Eluardian Instance complete with Beach Boys harmonies and cabaret trumpets.
With Of Montreal’s patchwork musical styles it’s often hard to know where one song ends and the next one begins and Skeletal Lamping is a bit like a multi-album opus on one CD as they fearlessly do whatever the hell they want to. But, at its core, it is infectious pop music that keeps you coming back for more. It would probably take about 100 listens to approach fluency in this fragmented phantasm of a musical language, but here’s some better advice – set your brain to shuffle and enjoy.