A full decade after their early releases as an adjunct member of the pioneering 1990s lo-fi collective Elephant 6, Of Montreal finally broke through to the mainstream in 2007. An unexpected boost in national exposure came when one of that album's songs, "Wraith Pinned to the Mist," was adapted for a national television ad campaign for a chain of steak restaurants, complete with leader Kevin Barnes singing new lyrics. Of Montreal's label, Polyvinyl Records, took the opportunity to reissue some of the prolific band's more obscure early records. If He Is Protecting Our Nation...Then Who Will Protect Big Oil, Our Children? (2003) was originally a limited-edition EP sold only on the band's 2003 tour and through their website. Nonetheless, this 13-track (including several brief instrumental interludes), half-hour EP is a pivotal release in the band's history, being their final recording with the lineup that recorded 2002's Aldshils Arboretum, which many consider the group's most accessible and pop-oriented album. Highlights include the gently trippy opener "My, What a Strange Day with a Swede" and a charming cover of the Zombies' "Friends of Mine."
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AllMusic Review by AllMusic