My one word review of the three “official” Manchester Orchestra albums:
I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child (2006) – Yes!
Mean Everything To Nothing (2009) – Yes.
Simple Math (2011) – Eh.
From their sophomore release, this is “In My Teeth” –
Standout tracks: “Pride” and “The River”
Weakest track: “I Can Feel a Hot One” and “Jimmy, He Whispers” (the track at the end of “The River”)
I may: revisit this one at a later date. After it initially leaked in March of 2009, almost a full month before its April 21 release date, I must’ve jammed this thing like a million times, even though Last.fm says 654 times. Divide that by 11 tracks, and that’s 60+ complete spins, which… for me is a lot. I’m over it, to be honest. Listening today wasn’t masochism by any means, but the record has definitely lost its spark with me. And that may be a temporary thing, or it may be a permanent thing because of the period in my life (or most importantly, the person I was with at the time) when this came out. I will say though that the first time I listened to “Shake It Out,” I cried. The movement near the end makes it one of the best indie rock songs I’ve ever heard. The title track “Everything to Nothing” has that same building, epic chorus which much of the follow-up Simple Math lacks. But I am having difficulty in trying to stomach much of the rest of Mean Everything to Nothing. Thankfully, now I have Bad Books and KevDev.
In the album’s defense: It was my Album of the Year in 2009.
RIYL: The Favorite Gentlemen family of… gentlemen. Kevin Devine, Bad Books, The Front Bottoms, All Get Out, etc. Aggressive indie rock, a la Cursive. There’s even a little latent Nirvana influence in here.