Wednesday, 5 May 2010

The National On a High

I know I know, High Violet ain't officially out till next week. But trust me when I say I will ABSOLUTELY buy the CD for this album the SECOND I see it on the racks. Yes, it's that good.

You can download the first single Bloodbuzz Ohio from the official site HERE. It sounds a bit like Squalor Victoria from Boxer, but give it time to grow on you. The rest of the album is also like that - at first you'll hear snippets from songs you like, then as you keep listening to it, the whole album comes together gloriously.

My favorite songs on the album? The slow-burning Runaway, Afraid of Everyone (even the "soul soul soul soul soul soul" part in the end), Bloodbuzz Ohio (I couldn't get the sentence "I still owe money, to the money, to the money I owe" out of my head for ages), Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks (sweet and uplifting at the same time) and Terrible Love. The rest are good as well, but these are the songs that really stood out for me.

This is one of those albums that I can just play on loop the entire day, like Boxer & The Xx's XX; and not get even a little bit tired of it. Both are albums where the tone of the lead singers are relatively low, so you don't have to scream to sing along to the songs, and yet, they have a hypnotic effect on you that induces you to hum along to the songs even if you don't know the lyrics. Sometimes unconsciously as well (I got quite a few strange looks from colleagues doing this in the office...)

Ok, if there is a complaint I have about it, it's that it sounds very much like their previous albums Alligator and Boxer. In fact, if you put them all in the same playlist and shuffle through them one by one, it sounds like one LOOONG but AWESOME album. No complaints there actually...

PS: After the chore that was the last 'Track By Track Music Review', I decided to sod it all and just focus on writing what I think of the album. Easier leh.


FuadKyoto said...

Haha i know what you mean about strange looks. I used to get strange looks when i'd sing lines from "Mistaken for Strangers" when I first got into it big time.

SuAnn Lim said...

i also want... buy for me plz! :D

Nobby Nobbs said...

All together now! 'You get mistaken for strangers by your own friends.
When you pass them at night under the silvery, silvery citibank lights.
Arm in arm in arm and eyes and eyes glazing under'!!!!!

Strizzt said...

It's been two weeks now: I suppose I can now safely say that High Violet is going to be my new Sky Blue Sky.

I actually think each of The National's albums have a certain (but subtle) style/theme/sound that makes them stand out from one another. That, and my habit of always listening to a whole album from start to end (I don't skip/shuffle tracks), makes it hard to imagine having all of their songs on shuffle as one longgggg album. @_@