There has been some incredible releases already with the New Year, whether it is through TTNG or Tyvek. Yet as I work through my long overdue articles, a particular one always strikes my attention. Back towards the end of November, an Austin, TX staple, My Education, released their sixth album, A Drink For All My Friends in North America on Headbump Records/Haute Magie and in Europe on Golden Antenna. Sonic explorer’s at heart, My Education’s A Drink For All My Friends is the band’s most streamlined and aggressive effort yet, while remaining an entrancing cinematic journey throughout.
Originally formed in 1999, the band’s membership has expanded and contracted between and after each release. Still, while the material buildup of the group has changed, the sonic landscapes have grown with each release. Think of it like Doug Martsch’s Built to Spill lineup, except within the vast domains of post-rock, post-prog, and post-hardocre. My Education has released 5 full-length albums, several singles, compilation appearances, and a 12″ vinyl collaboration with avant-hip hop duo Dalek. in the past, as well as having their singles remixed by members of bands such as Kinski, Pelican, Red Sparowes and Dalek.
So as for the release itself? At times, My Educations pulls off tracks that faithfully push forward a movement similiar to that of Turing Machines with it’s electronic pedal heavy riffs and uncompromising percussion/bass. Yet at other tracks, it is a blissful acceptance of beauty in patience as displayed by such groups as Tortoise or Collection of Colonies of Bees. If I wanted to be simpler, I would simply say the album is all over the place except that it is not: rather, it is a very purposeful journey with moments of peace followed by the always present shadow of entropy, disorder, and chaos. A Drink For All My Friends is the album for those vinyl nerds, sitting alone with massive headphones in their room for hours. It is for the intellectually curious introverts in all of us. And, more importantly in my opinion, it’s an album for me.
So trust me on this recommendation or don’t. Frankly, it’s not my concern or job to care. Yet it is my job to cover such a beautifully crafted album, one which I nearly missed due to my own slothfulness. It is a mistake I hope to never make again, particularly with the reward that My Education provided me. Don’t make the same mistake: grab a download, catch them live, and let your inner introvert run wild. I know I did.