Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Everybody Acts Crazy Nowadays

Things have been weird in Portland, Or. these last few years. Transitioning from the Portlandia parody of "the dream of the 90s," where people go to "retire in their 20s" to an overflow of Seattle and San Francisco thanks to the emerging "Silicon Forest."

Unsurprisingly - given the rapidly rising rent, stagnant wages, in conjunction with some subliminal historic biases - tensions have been flaring since November 2016, most famously with the "Portland train incident" last summer. There seems to be a protest rally at least once a month. Tensions run high on public transportation and on the streets. Portland, Or. is boiling over - a microcosm of the rest of the United States.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra encapsulate the mental breakdown of society with "Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays." They don't seem to be too worried about it, however, revealing a "What, me worry?" grin and an insanely infectious beat.



"Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays" is a Prince-like disco-funk tale of mental meltdown, delivered with UMO's slightly warped psychedelia. Unknown Mortal Orchestra's plasticine funk is wavy, wavering, colorful, the musical equivalent of one of those unicorn horn lollipops you used to get at the amusement park. Like those uni-pops, "Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays" reveal colorful new layers with each listen. Unlike those colorful confectioneries, "Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays" won't leave you feeling sick with a bleeding tongue.

Portlanders are use to weirdness, madness, and making do. Perhaps that's why Unknown Mortal Orchestra don't sound too troubled (only one member lives in PDX, worth noting). Portlanders have been dancing in the ashes and gushing out psychedelic anthems while Babylon burns for decades. We've had a chance to get used to it. We've kept Portland weird - now the rest of the world that can learn to deal with the plague of madness.

We Are: The Guard can't wait to hear Sex & Food, which is coming out on April 6 on Jagjaguwar.


J. Simpson occupies the intersection between criticism, creativity, and academia. Based out of Portland, Or., he is the author of Forestpunk, an online journal/brand studying the traces of horror, supernatural, and the occult through music, fashion and culture. He plays in the dreamfolk band Meta-Pinnacle with his partner Lily H. Valentine, with whom he also co-founded Bitstar Productions, a visual arts collective focused on elevating Pop Culture to High Art.