Songs of 2014: Ought – Habit

Ought - Habit

Is it too early to call my favourite song of 2014? I’d say so unless a deep cut from the new One Direction record released next week blows me away. So here goes…

Montréal-based, post-punk outfit Ought burst on to the scene with their excellent debut album More Than Any Other Day in April this year. Before that, they piqued the interest of many a music aficionado with the release of lead-single “Habit”. Lead singer Tim Beeler opens the song with a line describing the intangible nature of addiction, later adding ‘It’s not that I need it/It’s that I need it’ with the subtle shift in emphasis on the repeated words turning this lyric from a uninteresting tautology into something more profound.

The angular guitar lines drive the track sonically and add, along with the keyboard, a restless feel as the song builds to a close with Beeler repeating the line ‘I feel a habit forming’ in his manic delivery.

The rest of the album further displays the band’s unending confidence as they continue to develop a wide range of post-punk styles, making them sound like scores of bands for yesteryear. Remnants of the likes of Television, Jonathan Richmond, Slint, Joy Division and Gang of Four can all be found on the record, whether or not the band made a conscious effort to sound like any of them.

  • Meadomakr

    My shorthand for these lads is Gang of Falling Heads, in an affectionate way. I have to say tho that Habit is a mightily disturbing little number. A grim expression of the deep insulation of the heroin high which allows a blanketed yet magnanimous feeling towards humanity–uncomfortable to hear in a song.