Barnes Storming

Athens' Of Montreal gives its whimsical psychedelia a raucous jolt

"That's the sacrifice," he says. "There's not very much going on in Athens, so pretty much the only thing to do is to work on projects. In a way that's great, but in a way you're missing out on a lot of life experiences, because it's such a small town and it's sort of limited what you can do."

The question, he says, is the same one faced by most artists. "Do we want to be really prolific and have a great body of work, or do we want to spend our money on traveling and seeing the world?"

For now, Of Montreal is in the fortunate position to follow both paths--the band's records have sold well enough to allow it to tour Europe and Japan, and its current itinerary finds the Athenians crossing the country to get to San Francisco and back.

Despite the extensiveness of the outfit's tour, however, there will be no stops in Montreal, or anywhere else in Canada for that matter. It's probably just as well: The cold and flu season is creeping in there, and, if Of Montreal's previous run-ins have been any indication, the band would have a lot of explaining to do.

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