The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Thank God for Mental Illness

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At the risk of further belaboring a rather obvious point, with Thank God for Mental Illness, their third collection of absolutely stunning music in less than a year, the Brian Jonestown Massacre parallels the prolific and effortless brilliance of the Rolling Stones at their fevered late-1960s peak; the sheer scope of their achievements is stunning -- rarely are bands quite so productive, or quite so consistently amazing. Thank God is the BJM's down-and-dirty country-blues outing, all 13-odd tracks supposedly recorded on a single July day at a cost of just $17.36; while it lacks the blistering immediacy of their previous material, the album swaggers and struts with all of the group's usual attitude intact, coming complete with a loose, offhanded feel perfectly accenting the overall atmosphere of debauchery -- "Too Crazy to Care," "Sound of Confusion" and "Talk Minus Action Equals Shit" aren't just song titles, they're words the band lives by.

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