Release Date: May 23, 2006
Record label: Matador
Genre(s): Indie, Rock
When Mission of Burma released Onoffon in 2004, a large part of the album's charge for fans came from the mere fact it existed at all -- after calling it quits in 1983 thanks to Roger Miller's hearing problems, Mission of Burma seemed like the least likely of all great bands to reunite, and that they were able to reconvene in the recording studio without embarrassing themselves felt nearly as important as the quality of the music, strong and powerful as it was. So the fact MoB are still together in 2006 ups the ante for their second post-reunion album, and The Obliterati wastes no time proving that Onoffon's excellence was neither a fluke nor a trick of post-punk nostalgia. While the presence of songs like "Prepared" and "Nicotine Bomb" on Onoffon suggested maturity had made Mission of Burma a more subtle band, The Obliterati is the most aggressive and physically powerful record they've created to date -- from the moment "2wice" bursts from the speakers, this music never stops exploding like an artfully arranged case of fireworks, and the liberating energy and righteous rage of these 14 songs easily matches their salad days of combining the guitar-powered rage of punk with the intelligence and sonic adventure of art rock.
Starting in a firestorm of drums, charged with abrasive intelligence and vibrating, distorted energy, this second outing from the revived Mission of Burma is more intense and cohesive than OnOffOn, combining difficult structures with headlong aggression, mind-sticking melodies with joyful blurts of noise. It might just last a few rounds with Vs., the band’s 24-year-old defining statement. The main thing that differentiates The Obliterati from first-wave Burma recordings is humor.