AbsolutePunk.net
   Username
Password
 
All Posts by User
Displaying user's 8 posts
09:03 AM on 04/16/13
#2
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
Hmm, I liked 'Shepherd’s Dog' and 'Kiss Eachother Clean' a lot more than any of his other work. Hopefully I'll enjoy this one too.
Chances seem good, haha. I don't know, I loved The Shepherd's Dog, but I think his songwriting has gotten less and less distinctive with each album since.
09:49 AM on 04/16/13
#3
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
I ran through this album twice yesterday, and the mid-section is where it lost me. I love the first 5 tracks and the last 2, but the ones in between just muddled together. Chances are this one is a grower, though.
I love the beginning and the last three tracks. And I like the stuff in the middle fine as standalone songs, they just kind of lose me in sequence. But yeah, probably something that will disappear with more listens.
06:58 PM on 04/16/13
#4
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
Spot on review. Great job.

Thank you!

Anyone else hear "Astral Weeks" in some of the instrumentation choices (horns / upright bass)?

Definitely wouldn't be surprised if there's a bit of Van in here.

Too much comparing to past work in this review. It was a good read as always, but not one of my favorites of yours.

Grace For Saints and Ramblers is so damn fun.

I guess that's kind of the point, though: I can't listen to this album without wanting to put on his previous records.

This is Sam Beam's most accomplished work yet. MUCH better than Kiss Each Other Clean. Brian Blade's drumming is outstanding.

While I would agree that it's a more cohesive record than Kiss, I'd take three or four songs off that album over this entire release without thinking twice. And the band does sound great, but I think Beam has better songs in him than these.
07:26 PM on 04/16/13
#5
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
I completely agree with this review. Someone above me mentioned "too much referencing past material", and while that may be somewhat true, I thought it was important to give context for this album. Nothing on this album hits me like anything on Our Endless Numbered Days.

I often feel like giving context is an important piece of reviewing, but this time especially, I wanted to spend a fair chunk of my time talking about how things used to be. And that's partially because I love his older songs (to the point where two of his songs would be in my top 20 all time), but also because he's changed so much over the years that he's hardly even recognizable as the same artist anymore. But I do appreciate his refusal to answer to anyone. A lot of artists would save new sonic frontiers like this for a side project, so I admire his determination to make the music that he is passionate about. I just wish I were passionate about it as well.

Totally, I don't want to sound like a jerk, I hate critiquing people who are better at something than I am, haha. I just would have liked to hear more about the actual album.

Haha, no hard feelings man. I know that I've expressed that same complaint about reviews in the past, and I definitely tried to avoid it while I was writing (which is why this thing ended up being so damn long), but I just kept coming back to the stuff he did in the past.
07:55 PM on 04/16/13
#6
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
You did an extraordinary job of chronicling his career (especially since your favorites appear to be eerily attune to mine), so much so I stopped after like a sentence into the second paragraph and had to play Naked As We Came while I continued reading, which turned into Boy With A Coin and so on...ended up listening to him all morning haha.
Haha, well I'll take that as a success!

Honestly, I'll probably end up loving this album once I get a few months past the initial reaction and adjust my expectations for what I wanted it to be. I can get on board with Sam Beam making a jazz/soul record. It's just that I feel like he's not writing those jaw-dropping lyrics anymore. I can cherry-pick a dozen (at least) lines off Endless Numbered Days that just blow me away. Very little on this album had a similar impact, and that's weird, since I've considered Beam the best lyricist of his generation since the first time I heard "The Trapeze Swinger" over the credits of In Good Company.
10:35 AM on 04/19/13
#7
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
The lyrics in Fever Dream still nearly bring me to tears each time...
That song is just unbelievably, devastatingly beautiful. The fucking mandolin interlude still makes my heart ache.
10:05 AM on 04/23/13
#8
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Offline
User Info.
Craig Manning's Avatar
I've been listening to Iron & Wine for quite a long time now, and this is my personal favorite of his. To each their own.

Just feels too sweet and airbrushed to me.

Good review Craig. Still haven't gotten a chance to listen to this somehow...

Thanks dude. Let me know what you think when you listen.

NEWS, MUSIC & MORE
Search News
Release Dates
Exclusives
Best New Music
Articles
CONNECT
Submit News
Forums
Contests
Mobile Version
AP.net Logos
HIDDEN TREASURES
AbsolutePunk Podcast
Free Music
Sports Forum
Technology Forum
Recommendations
INFORMATION
Advertising
Contact Us
Copyright Policy
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
FOLLOW
Twitter | Facebook | RSS
AP.net Podcast on iTunes
UnderTheGun
Purevolume
Chorus.fm | @jason_tate