The National’s highly anticipated follow-up to their 2007 critically-acclaimed album “Boxer” has leaked before its release date. The National have kept busy almost the entire time in between albums touring and with the Dessner brothers putting together what is probably the best charity compilation ever; “Dark Was the Night”, to which the National also contributed a song to. The National starting garnering buzz for the new album by premiering some new songs and releasing the song ‘Bloodbuzz Ohio’ as a free download, and playing ‘Terrible Love’ on Jimmy Fallon.
The first things that becomes apparent is that the band used a demo version of ‘Terrible Love’ as the opener for the album. I thought it was a mistake then I did a little research and found that they had used an early version of the song, that doesn’t sound very polished but still has the same power as when they performed the song on Jimmy Fallon. The record procedes to ‘Sorrow’ which is more of an sentimental song but picks up the pace of the album. The National seem t ohave created a more atmospheric record, with various forms of layering found on most of the songs. The record was excellent upon the first few plays but it seems to get better with every play. You find new things that you didn’t hear before like the piano on ‘Terrible Love’ and all the small noises like something that sounds like snoring on ‘Afraid of Everyone’ and instruments that just compliment those instruments in the spotlight. Other highlights from the album include ‘Anyone’s Ghost’, ‘England’, ‘Converstation 16’ *which reminded of zombies, and ‘Lemonworld’.
The record is going to be available on May 10 and 11 but the band has decided that they will be streaming the album over at the New York Times starting on Friday. You can buy the album here.