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06:08 PM on 04/16/13
vivatoto56
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I guess that's kind of the point, though: I can't listen to this album without wanting to put on his previous records.

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.
06:26 PM on 04/16/13
Craig Manning
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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.
06:36 PM on 04/16/13
vivatoto56
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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.



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.

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.
06:55 PM on 04/16/13
Craig Manning
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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.
11:41 AM on 04/17/13
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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, I ended up listening to all of Our Endless Numbered Days after reading the review!
11:42 AM on 04/17/13
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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.
The lyrics in Fever Dream still nearly bring me to tears each time...
09:35 AM on 04/19/13
Craig Manning
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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.
03:31 PM on 04/20/13
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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.
07:26 AM on 04/21/13
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Good review Craig. Still haven't gotten a chance to listen to this somehow...
09:05 AM on 04/23/13
Craig Manning
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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.
11:52 PM on 04/23/13
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Fantastic review. Spot on with my feelings, it almost seems out of place for him.

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