Wednesday, December 30, 2009
When an artist says that they're going to write an album that's "deeply personal," this means that either a) it's going to be about some intense subject matter but will still make pretty generic commentary overall or b) it's going to be so personal that it's both breathtaking and uncomfortable. This album lunges forth into category B.
It peels back the layers of traditional song writing and comes right out and says everything that appears to be on lead singer Andy Hull's mind. There are no apologies, and no attempt to acclimate the listener to what they're in store for, but that's a good thing!
"The Only One" was a great way to kick off the album; it is deeply confessional and is akin to listening in on a therapy session. Here are all of Hull's insecurities, fears, and even a bit of his rage wrapped up in a catchy, snappy little number that sets the tone quite well. Through the different ups and downs of the album--the calmer moments of Hull's whispering and the moments where he is literally addressing his listeners in a desperate, angry wail--you feel like you really get to know the man, and yet by the end you're still left wanting.
That's exactly what a listener wants to feel when they've finished such an album, and although going for the "deeply personal" route so early in a band's career can be a massive risk, Manchester Orchestra has pulled it off effortlessly!
Go Download: "The Only One," "Tony the Tiger"