Guided By Voices’ new album, Tremblers And Goggles By Rank marks a new phase in Robert Pollard's songwriting evolution.
Robert Pollard's songs have always included non-traditional approaches to form and song structure, but with Tremblers And Goggles By Rank he has pushed it further than ever. While the familiar Guided By Voices pop-craft and melodic virtuosity always occupies center stage, the first-time listener will never be able to predict what's coming next in a song. GBV's latest batch of brilliant songs ride on colorful psychedelic flourishes and brash post-punk textures that make Tremblers And Goggles By Rank a one-of-a-kind head trip.
"Alex Bell" and "Focus On The Flock" are the two anchors, each one expansive and filled with rock grandeur, and both exemplifying the complex wordplay, melodies, and structures that are hallmarks of GBV. While there are hooks and earworms aplenty within, the album is a complex and kaleidoscopic journey, representing a new echelon in the GBV universe. It represents another level of songwriting and performance from Robert Pollard and band. It plays out like an intricate and powerful collage in a very multicolored and multi-faceted fashion, a work grand in scale and undertaking with triumphant and glorious choruses, deep and dark wormholes, sinewy twists and turns, bold and theatrical bravados, massive cliffs, plateaus, peaks, and valleys along the way.