MGMT delivers disappointment

By Haley Galvin

MGMT’s new album “Little Dark Age” is a disappointment and does not offer any solid songs, making one listen plenty and, for some, maybe even too much.

From start to finish, “Little Dark Age” is nothing spectacular and is simply a flop. Released Feb. 9, MGMT attempts to give a retro vibe to each of the songs on the album, which ultimately falls flat, literally and figuratively. The notes and music are monotone, and songs seem to drag on and on with no clear message.

“She Works Out Too Much,” the first track on the album, sets a mood of chaos with scattered beats that set the tone for the album, but not in a good way. Each track follows suit, with none of them seeming to fit with their predecessor.

“When You Die,” the third track on the album, is a prime example full of monotone lyrics over sour notes. The song begins simply with a hazy sounding “hey,” followed by a period of random notes, which drags on too long. Finally, it picks up again with lyrics, “I’m not that nice / I’m mean, and I’m evil,” delivered with a lack of enthusiasm making it hard to believe the artists themselves even enjoy the songs they are singing.

To create contrast, the album tries to provide a techno backbeat in several of the songs. While this beat adds a more upbeat and catchy tempo, it ultimately clashes with the overall retro theme, leaving listeners with a bad taste in their mouth.

Despite this, some of the songs have redeemable qualities, such as the album’s ninth track, “When You’re Small.” The track is a mellow ballad with relatable lyrics, which create a more somber mood than many of the other tracks. Despite this small success, it is still full of a scattered mess of notes, making it hard to listen to. Overall, this track is one of the more bearable ones on the album, though by no means is it a stellar hit.

Potential shines through occasionally on “Little Dark Age,” but it is almost always followed by a musical melody that does not seem right, ultimately ruining each track. The tracks seem to be thrown together in a chaotic way that just does not work for MGMT. There is no cohesion tying the elements together, leaving this sounding like a random collection of songs that resembles a homemade mixtape more than an album.

MGMT falls short of delivering what could have been a retro album with a techno twist and, while some of the songs have a few positive qualities, it seems nothing could be enough to redeem the train wreck album.