Deluxe digital version (exclusive to digital retailers) contains The Majestic Majesty; a bonus collection of 10 acoustic versions of songs on the album.
Within days of Alternative Press including Censored Colors on its list of 10 Essential Albums of 2008, the members of Portugal. The Man were trudging through the Boston snow to start work on their fourth release in four years, The Satanic Satanist. As John Baldwin Gourley, named the year’s Best Vocalist in that same issue of AP, explains the pace at which his band has turned out any number of the decade’s more inspired moments, “Honestly, I think we should be putting out more music. It keeps you thinking, keeps you growing and progressing. If you stop and let it sit for too long, I feel like you start to lose track of where you were going.”
For 2008's Censored Colors, Portugal. The Man spent two weeks in Seattle with their friends in Kay Kay and the Weathered Underground making an album Gourley says he wrote in tribute to the music of a youth spent tuned to oldies radio as his parents drove around Alaska. One of his earliest musical memories, finding a tape of Abbey Road in a box of his parents’ cassettes, resulted in Censored Colors' second side where all the songs are strung together in an epic suite.
For The Satanic Satanist, Gourley and his bandmates - Zachary Scott Carothers/bass, and Ryan Neighbors/keyboards, and the drummer for the album, Garrett Lunceford - flew to Boston’s Camp Street Studios to work with Paul Q. Kolderie, whose previous clients include both the Pixies and Radiohead, with additional production help from Adam Taylor (The Lemonheads, The Dresdon Dolls) and Cornershop sitarist/keyboardist Anthony Saffery.
"People Say," the lead-off track, finds Gourley speaking out against the human cost of war. On “Lovers in Love,” the band works the groove like Isaac Hayes or Curtis Mayfield in their blaxploitation days, while “Work All Day” could pass for ?uestlove slowing down the beat to “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise).” The Satanic Satanist also finds them working more with loops and samples than they have since their 2006 debut.
Portugal. The Man's fourth album, The Satanic Satanist, is perfect for summer: appealingly warm, even as they mine thematic turf in their hometown of Wasilla, Alaska. Combining Motown falsettos and the best of late-'60s groove rock with spacey loops and hipster-art-collective sing-alongs, they deliver a sound that's friendly and familiar without being derivative; it's a sort of retrofitted make-out van on a club crawl. And in John Baldwin Gourley, they've got a vocalist whose sweet, fully committed tenor instantly makes you believe in his songs of northern disillusionment. Palin who?