Its been eight long years since Modest Mouse released an album and arguably another three since they made anything worthwhile, but while the drought is over in a physical sense, Strangers to Ourselves is a mere shower in terms of quality.
The album starts off with the plodding title track, which starts off much the same as it finishes, never really making its mark and fizzling out without causing much fuss at all. This summary is also quite true for many of the other tracks on Strangers to Ourselves such as ‘Be Brave’’ and ‘Shit in Your Cut’. These songs have the potential to be great Modest Mouse songs, but they falter when they would normally explode into a intense chorus or heart wrenching bridge.
This record doesn’t completely miss the mark, containing some solid songs such as ‘Lampshades on Fire’ a catchy track that showcases Issac’s classic maniac singing. Other tracks like ‘Ansel’ and ‘Of Course We Know’ are decent, but pale in comparison to the band’s earlier material.
In 2015 Modest Mouse have made a record which stands as their most forgettable and lifeless effort yet and while judging a band by their earlier work can be an overly narrow viewpoint, it’s clear Modest Mouse really need to re-learn the cockroach.