A horrible hack

Mum

Summer Make Good

Year Released: 2004
Format: CD
Label: Fat Cat Records
 
Reviewed by Hari Ashurst on Jun 13, 2007
We are at war. We are not entirely at home, comfortable or ashamed of this. We can hear the explosions in the introduction to Summer Make Good. We can’t hear summer, or the joy that was heard on Finally We Are No-one. But there is a hint of happiness, the children clutching hands, in chorus with the world. This is the theatre of life and Múm are conducting. Night falls, we are plunged into darkness and the depths of a war torn nightmare. Back are the explosions and with them a trumpet creeping into the peeling wallpaper and through the hole in the wall. This is a fitful dream or a brief nightmare. This is darker than Finally We Are No-one and it is more experimental. ‘Small Deaths Are The Saddest’ features twisted interlocking rhythms that touch on Gamelan music.

Múm have come a long way. We journey with them into the shadows and ethereal vocals sing a lullaby as we go. Acoustic guitar joins our ranks but eventually explosion cuts all welcome sound. ‘Away’ sounds beautiful but brittle. Destroyed by explosions it becomes ‘Oh, How The Boat Drifts’ the bittersweet highlight of Summer Make Good. The track creaks and builds and we drift with it.

We reach the end of the album and the distant war returns. The war with ourselves. Finally we are cast adrift at sea. The ship is abandoned. Where on Finally We Are No-One Múm was ecstatic and gleefully melodious, now they are darker, more atonal and dissonant. But insistent melodies eventually peer through the thick dark layers like rays of sunshine. They bring summer, and summer does make good.

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