I'm listening to Francis the Mute.
Then it hits me: I don't give a fuck about prog rock. I really don't. Tool would be the only real exception to this rule, and that's probably because 1) they're rooted in heavy metal 2) lyrically they aren't just abstract messes that don't ever speak poetically 3) they don't just wander around and then peter out with bloops and bleeps like a drunk through the streets at 3 am to end songs.
And I hear these songs on Francis, and I think: shit man, this is, in some ways, everything I hated about 80's thrash metal-overwrought guitars that want to spend more time going weedly-weedly-weedly wee-weeEEEEEE! than actually playing something or contributing to the song as a whole.
It's too bad, b/c there are some really interesting moments here to, where 70's funk(James Brown horn sections) combine with the mess that is the rest of the band and the song becomes really interesting. But only for 3 minutes. In a 40 minute song, that really isn't enough.
Pitchfork hit a lot of it on the head already, and I'm just agreeing with them, I guess.