Kevin Barnes recorded Of Montreal's 11th album, Paralytic Stalks, in his own Sunlandic Studios. "Exorcismic Breeding Knife" features a surging orchestral cacophony, one of a number of tracks that reflect the inspiration of works by such difficult 20th century classical composers as Harry Partch, Charles Ives and Krzysztof Penderecki. "On many songs on the album, I eschewed the template of conventional pop music while experimenting with microtonality, surrealism and through-composed arrangements," Barnes explained to NME. "Musically, I wanted to create something highly emotive and intimate, something that expressed all of the confusion, suffering, madness and longing inside of me.
Lyrically, I wanted to use a very raw and direct style, influenced by Henry Miller, Bukowski, Celine, Selby," he added. "I hope that people connect with this album, and that it helps others like me to feel less troubled and less alone."