First off, the pronunciation is "Em Jee Em Tee" not "Management", that is the old, this is the new, get with it.
It was December, nearly a year after MGMT's debut had been released. I was in a car with some friends, and "Time to Pretend" came on. I was amazed. The songs had electronica elements, psychedelic rock elements, pop elements, I amazed at how they pulled all those genres together. I immediately asked my friend Robbie who these pied pipers were, and he told me MGMT; I went home and bought the whole album and I was pleasantly surprised.
The album starts out with an agry, roaring synth, then the guitar lines, then the sassy, almost whiny vocals, "I'm feelin rough I'm feelin raw in the time of my life". They blatantly describe their ambitions to be rockstars. The songs on this album are really great. Every song gets to go out on its own adventure but still maintains the same electronica/indie/psychedelic face. The synth layers and beats in "Kids", the sexy groove in "Electric Feel", the album's high points are held together by their keyboardist.
I would say this album is very durable. It fits any mood. From chilling out to making out, this is a great album to just put on and groove to for ambience, or an album you can pay attention to; it's truly versatile. I really admire these guys as musicians and songwriters and I think they did a really good job of tying together their influences. I get a little annoyed by the lead singer's whiny vocals in "Weekend Wars" and "Pieces of What", but they're still good songs. These guys are the voice of the whole Indie/College Rock scene. Talking about free love, screwing around, all the good stuff. "The Youth" gives a good analysis of our generation. "Of Moons, Birds and Monsters" and the other final tracks show the band get a little bit more deep. The melodies and moods are a little darker, but it shows their musical development throughout the album, a really beautiful thing.
Like I said, this is a really versatile album. You can pop it on to listen to, or to just hangout with. I am very interested to see where their sophomore album will go...hopefully not downwards, and I really want a chance to see them live. One point of criticism is the obvious, the vocals are mediocre at best, annoying at times, but somehow it kind of works for them.
Points of Interest: "Time to Pretend", "Electric Feel", "Of Moons, Birds, and Monsters"
Listen if you like: LCD Sound System, The Unicorns, The Bravery