+ -

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+ -
Mew + - cover.jpg
Studio album by
Released21 April 2015 (2015-04-21)
RecordedMay 2013–September 2014
Copenhagen, Denmark
GenreElectro-pop, post-rock[1]
Length58:18
LabelPlay It Again Sam, Evil Office, A:larm Music, Universal Music, Petroleum Records
ProducerMichael Beinhorn, Mew
Mew chronology
No More Stories...
(2009)
+ -
(2015)
Visuals
(2017)
Singles from + -
  1. "Satellites"
    Released: 19 January 2015
  2. "Water Slides"
    Released: 16 March 2015

+ - (pronounced "plus minus") is the sixth studio album by Danish alternative rock band Mew. It was released on 24 April 2015. The album was produced by Michael Beinhorn and was promoted by the singles "Satellites" and "Water Slides". It was Mew's first studio album in five-and-a-half years, following their 2009 record No More Stories....[2] Bassist Johan Wohlert made his return on this album after being absent from the band's previous album following his departure in 2006.[3] + - was also the final album to feature guitarist Bo Madsen, who left the band on 1 July 2015.[4]

Recording and release[edit]

The recording process for + - started in May 2013 in Copenhagen. Mew enlisted the help of American producer Michael Beinhorn, with whom they worked on their fourth studio album, And the Glass Handed Kites (2005). They also invited guitarist Russell Lissack of the British rock band Bloc Party, whom they first met years earlier during a joint US concert tour, to take part in the writing process and play on the album. Lissack was featured on the track "My Complications".[5]

The release date for the album was announced on 19 January 2015 as 27 April 2015, simultaneously releasing "Satellites" as the first single.[6] The album was issued as a CD, a heavyweight gatefold double 12" vinyl and a limited edition deluxe double CD book,[7] as well as digitally, with iTunes Store pre-order starting in January.

On 2 February 2015, "The Night Believer" was premiered on Norwegian radio station NRK P3. The song features guest vocals by New Zealand singer-songwriter Kimbra.[8]

The album's second single "Water Slides" was released on 16 March 2015.[9] On 3 April 2015, Mew premiered the song "Witness".[10]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic78/100[11]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4/5 stars[1]
Consequence of SoundB[12]
DIY4/5 stars[13]
Drowned in Sound7/10[14]
Exclaim!8/10[15]
The Line of Best Fit7/10[16]
musicOMH4/5 stars[17]
NME7/10[18]
Pitchfork7.2/10[19]
PopMatters8/10 stars[20]

Upon its release, the album received favourable reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 78, based on 17 reviews.[11]

Ian Cohen of Pitchfork commented that "+- is liable to be one of the more magnificent-sounding rock records you’ll hear all year."[19]

Commercial performance[edit]

The album debuted at number one in Denmark, becoming Mew's second number-one album. In the United Kingdom, + - debuted at number 59 on the UK Albums Chart with first-week sales of 1,438 copies. It is the band's highest-charting album since Frengers (2003) charted at number 102.[21]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleLength
1."Satellites"6:09
2."Witness"3:01
3."The Night Believer"4:12
4."Making Friends"4:52
5."Clinging to a Bad Dream"6:43
6."My Complications"6:03
7."Water Slides"5:04
8."Interview the Girls"4:04
9."Rows"10:42
10."Cross the River on Your Own"7:28
Total length:58:18
Japanese version bonus tracks
No.TitleLength
11."Drinking Soda"5:02
12."Western Silver Lion Cub"4:02
Deluxe CD Edition Exclusive Disc: Live in Copenhagen 2014
No.TitleLength
1."Coffee Break"4:05
2."Satellites"5:56
3."She Spider"4:46
4."Hawaii"5:35
5."My Complications"5:42
6."Silas the Magic Car"4:03
7."Water Slides"4:45
8."Cross the River on Your Own"7:32
9."Special"3:09
10."The Zoo Keeper's Boy"5:27
Total length:51:45

Personnel[edit]

Mew

  • Jonas Bjerre – vocals, keyboards
  • Bo Madsen – guitar, backing vocals
  • Johan Wohlert – bass, backing vocals
  • Silas Utke Graae Jørgensen – drums, percussion

Additional personnel

Charts[edit]

Charts (2015) Peak
position
Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[22] 1
Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)[23] 9
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[24] 19
UK Albums (OCC)[25] 59
US Heatseekers Albums (Billboard)[26] 2
US Top Alternative Albums (Billboard)[27] 18
US Top Rock Albums (Billboard)[28] 25
US Top Tastemaker Albums (Billboard)[29] 8
US Vinyl Albums (Billboard)[30] 21

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Denmark[31] 21 April 2015 LP, CD, digital download Evil Office, A:larm Music, Universal Music
Belgium[32] 24 April 2015 Play It Again Sam
Germany[33][34]
Netherlands[35]
Norway[36] 27 April 2015 Petroleum Records
Poland[37] Play It Again Sam
United Kingdom[38]
United States[8] 28 April 2015

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Monger, James Christopher (1 May 2015). "+ - - Mew". AllMusic. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  2. ^ Goble, Corban (19 January 2015). "Mew Return With New Album +-, Share "Satellites"". Pitchfork. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  3. ^ Nielsen, Silas Bay (14 June 2014). "Johan Wohlert: Sådan kom jeg tilbage i Mew" (in Danish). DR. Retrieved 1 July 2015.
  4. ^ Stine Eskildsen, Rune Melchior Sjørvad (1 July 2015). "Før Roskilde-brag: Mew mister guitarist". Ekstra Bladet (in Danish). Retrieved 1 July 2015.
  5. ^ Jamieson, Sarah (22 January 2015). "Mew, on their new album: "The songs are each very different from each other, but somehow it works"". DIY. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  6. ^ Coplan, Chris (19 January 2015). "Mew announces new album, premieres first single "Satellites"—listen". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  7. ^ "Mew". Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  8. ^ a b "+ - by Mew". iTunes (US). Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  9. ^ "Facebook" – via Facebook.[non-primary source needed]
  10. ^ "Witness". Spotify. 3 April 2015. Retrieved 3 April 2015.
  11. ^ a b "Reviews for +- by Mew". Metacritic. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  12. ^ Corcoran, Nina (20 April 2015). "Mew – + –". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  13. ^ Jamieson, Sarah (27 April 2015). "Mew - +- album review". DIY. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  14. ^ Spenceley, Haydon (24 April 2015). "Album Review: Mew - +-". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 10 September 2019.
  15. ^ Frenette, Luke-Julius (22 April 2015). "Mew - +-". Exclaim!. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  16. ^ Day, Laurence (22 April 2015). "+- by Mew". The Line of Best Fit. Retrieved 10 September 2019.
  17. ^ Monk, Christopher (26 April 2015). "Mew – + –". musicOMH. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  18. ^ Horton, Matthew (17 April 2015). "6 Great Albums That May Have Passed You By This Week". NME. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  19. ^ a b Cohen, Ian (1 May 2015). "Mew: +- | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2 May 2015.
  20. ^ Blum, Jordan (10 May 2015). "Mew: + -". PopMatters. Retrieved 10 September 2019.
  21. ^ Jones, Alan (4 May 2014). "Official Charts Analysis: Blur's The Magic Whip debuts at No.1 with 43,746 sales". Music Week. Retrieved 1 July 2015.
  22. ^ "Danishcharts.dk – Mew – +-". Hung Medien. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  23. ^ "Mew: +-" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  24. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Mew – +-". Hung Medien. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  25. ^ "Mew | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  26. ^ "Mew Chart History (Heatseekers Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  27. ^ "Mew Chart History (Top Alternative Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  28. ^ "Mew Chart History (Top Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  29. ^ "Mew Chart History (Top Tastemaker Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  30. ^ "Mew Chart History (Vinyl Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  31. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (DK). Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  32. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (BE). Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  33. ^ "Mew – +-" (in German). PIAS Recordings Germany. Archived from the original on 31 January 2015. Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  34. ^ ""+ -" von MEW". iTunes (DE). Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  35. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (NL). Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  36. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (NO). Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  37. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (PL). Retrieved 31 January 2015.
  38. ^ "+ - by Mew". iTunes (GB). Retrieved 31 January 2015.