The Consuming Flame: Open Exercises in Group Form

Matmos - The Consuming Flame: Open Exercises in Group Form
Critic Score
Based on 8 reviews
2020 Ratings: #508 / 757
User Score
Based on 81 ratings
2020 Ratings: #470
Liked by 1 person
August 21, 2020 / Release Date
LP / Format
Thrill Jockey / Label
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The Consuming Flame is Matmos at their finest. Daniel and Schmidt have taken the simplest of concepts and manipulated it into a gorgeous and grotesque beast of an album.


The Consuming Flame is rich, intense and deftly woven into three hour-long suites.

What this three-hour opus does is show Matmos to still be intrepid sonic explorers, pushing the boundaries of musical orthodoxy and consolidating their unique position within the avant-garde.
For those willing to invest the time in it, getting lost in the record's vastness is immensely satisfying.
The Needle Drop

Despite a disjointed first act, The Consuming Flame is further proof of Matmos being one of the most ambitious and exciting forces in electronic music.

The collaged-together results are fascinating, often enthralling, occasionally an uphill slog, and every bit as anarchic as their genesis would suggest.
Spectrum Culture
New 3xLP effort big on technique and scope but it will leave most wanting less – and maybe more, too.
No comment.
First A.G Cook and now Matmos...
Y'all really just gonna release almost 3 hours and expect me to listen to it?
Don't they know I have a life, grades, a girlfriend, a family to care about? won, Matmos. I'll fucking listen to all three hours of this thing, but not because you said so! Because I just love your music so much and there are collaborations from every intriguing artist under the sun...

Time to forget about my responsibilities for a quick three hours...
Sure, some of the material here is excellent, and it's more exciting than 7G, the other nearly-three hour long electronic record released this month, but, just like 7G, this album's damnation comes in the form of a enormous tracklist. This thing is way, WAY too long. It's got a ton of filler, most of the songs turn into background music, and it all feels a bit pointless. The important lesson musicians should learn this month is that you shouldn't make a 2+ hour project (especially one that runs ... read more
This might sound ludicrous but... I have heard better three-hour long albums. It took a listen or two of this and some other similarly-long projects for me to make such a conclusion.

For one, this iteration of Matmos is not one I am particularly enticed by. The plastic sounds that comprised 'Plastic Anniversary' were rad and a sign that Matmos's innovation levels were still running high. 'The Consuming Flame...' does not bring anything especially new or exciting to the sound. Frankly, if one ... read more
While Matmos in titling, The Consuming Flame is a collection of 99 BPM recordings from 99 various artists in the enveloping modern electronic landscape. From Oneohtrix Point Never to Giant Swan and even clipping., this three hour collection is even more expansive than A. G. Cook's 7G. Sadly, given that this album runs more like a compilation, the quality from track to track can differ greatly, and while each of the three discs do have a general theme, sometimes it can lead to a myriad of ... read more
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Track List

  1. A Doughnut In the Sky (feat. Moth Cock, Colin Self, clipping., David Grubbs & Twig Harper)
  2. On the Team (feat. clipping., Yo La Tengo, Moth Cock, Rabit, Mouse On Mars & Giant Swan)
  3. Extraterrestrial Masters (feat. Marisa Anderson, Oneohtrix Point Never & Mouse On Mars)
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Added on: July 9, 2020