My Morning Jacket doesn’t mesh with psychedelia, but its brand of big, jam-friendly rock is as deserving of a hallucinatory light show as any band. A great way to feel the music they present on “Circuital” is to simply stare at the lime green orb on its cover.
The feeling for most tracks is that the band is in a large auditorium, playing as though it is oblivious to the emptiness of the room. The beginning of “Wonderful (The Way I Feel)” illustrates the curious (but no doubt intentional) tone.
Although the room may be empty, that doesn’t mean the music is the same way. “Victory Dance” and “The Day is Coming” feature the band at its fullest, with the quintet filling up that empty auditorium with keyboards, electric and pedal steel guitars, and a chorus of background vocals.
Two particularly enjoyable tracks are ones in which the band shows its sense of humor. “Outta My System” is a song about getting drug experimentation out of one’s way during youth, and the writer’s gratefulness for doing so. According to Rolling Stone, the track was originally written to be performed by The Electric Mayhem (The Muppet’s band featuring Animal on drums) in the upcoming Muppets movie, and although it deals with drug use, it sounds like happy-go-lucky jam suited for a band of puppets.
“Holdin’ On To Black Metal” is equally as humorous, mainly because it doesn’t resemble the frightening Scandinavian genre at all. Although the track is the album’s most raucous, with the chorus shouting the title, it’s far from coming off the rails.
My Morning Jacket finds a nice balance for a band built on jamming, finding ways to make each song unique without delving into long, boring tracks.