of Montreal evolved out of the Elephant Six collective (E6), a conglomeration of Louisiana musicians who relocated to Denver then Athens, GA to form the following groups: Apples In Stereo, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Minders, Elf Power, and Olivia Tremor Control. Most of these outfits have been making records for over 15 years now. of Montreal started off as a Beatle-esque pop band then morphed into a more dance-oriented glam outfit. Their singer, Kevin Barnes, presents an androgynous image, singing in falsetto, occasionally getting totally naked on stage. They can be very melodic and rather chaotic at the same time, the music often reaching the highest ADD/ritalin-addled heights, with kaleidoscopic signature shifts accented by multi-layered vocals that are dense and wordy. Psychedelic pop would be the most apt description for their music.
Several tracks on Paralytic Stalks, the band's 11th studio album, stretch past the 7-minute mark, with forays into symphonic string interludes, acoustic breakdowns, and Revolution #9 style mind melts. Jeff Mangum of Neutral Milk Hotel has achieved major cult status outside of the E6 while Robert Schneider and his Apples In Stereo crew have veered closest to mainstream success, but it's been Kevin Barnes and of Montreal that have consistently produced the most interesting and challenging music from the collective.
Buy this record if you wanna check out the collective consciousness of the collective's contributions.