Special Moves/Burning Image
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 5 Ratings

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  • Summary: Recorded over three performances at the Music Hall of Williamsburg in April 2009 in Brooklyn, New York, it is the Scottish rock group's first live album/DVD release.
  • Record Label: Rock Action / Rock Action Records
  • Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Indie Rock, Post-Rock, Experimental Rock
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Special Moves--which pulls at least one track from all six Mogwai albums, but no more than two--strategically positions the band's latter-day material among the old warhorses to build a set list that gradually intensifies and explodes like the band's best instrumental epics.
  2. As fans of the group will attest, there's nothing quite like experiencing Mogwai in a live setting and while Special Moves might never fully capture that sheer weight of sound, it nevertheless represents a hugely impressive live document (even without Burning, the accompanying DVD).
  3. With Special Moves, Mogwai have released a "greatest hits" collection in a sense, but it's indeed more special than that. Dramatic, at turns gentle, majestic and harsh, both old and new songs blend so well that there's no feeling of weak recent material sagging amidst earlier favorites.
  4. A useful entry point for newcomers, then, but there is just enough to make this a worthwhile purchase for long-time fans too.
  5. They highlight Mogwai's biggest stylistic trademarks, and little else-the ambient drone and the electric guitar crashes that break its spell, and the waves of sound that evolve from carefully crafted crescendos. So while the final cuts are cohesive, they're also tight-lipped-safe.
  6. Guitarist Stuart Braithwaite has certainly outstripped the generic post-rock style he helped to inspire, and does justice to some of his more direct influences--My Bloody Valentine's Kevin Shields and Robert Smith from The Cure, to name two. Extraneous touches, such as the occasional keyboard parts contributed by Barry Burns and the electronica-style glitches threaded through 2 Rights Make 1 Wrong, also ensure that Special Moves is a varied 75 minutes.
  7. 60
    It's hard to imagine anyone but the previously committed fan will be signing up here. [Sep 2010, p.99]

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
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  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of