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The National

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The National

#1

Post by AdamH » February 15th, 2013, 8:35 pm

Instead of clogging up The Lounge with my posts about them I'll post here.

Lampa asked me to rank the albums/EPs. Will be doing that soon.

Another favourite song of mine now is Lucky You.

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#2

Post by lampadatriste » February 15th, 2013, 10:39 pm

You made me miss The National, so I listened to Alligator on speakers in the evening yesterday. :)

I understand the feeling you mentioned, of all the albums forming one block. I often have that impression about bands when I listen to all the albums in a row while working. But I happened to discover each National album at a different time, so they are very distinctive to me.

My top would be something like this:

1. Alligator
2. Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers
3. Cherry Tree EP
4. Boxer
5. The Virginia EP
6. The National
7. High Violet

Bryce Dessner (one of the twins in the band) and the in-and-off violinist/multi-instrumentalist Padma Newsome are also part of a more classical oriented band called Clogs. They have two great records, I forgot to recommend them before. Matt Berninger collaborated in one song for their last album:



The other Dessner brother, Aaron produced a wonderful compilation called Dark Was the Night, you might want to check it out.
Last edited by lampadatriste on February 15th, 2013, 10:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#3

Post by AdamH » February 16th, 2013, 2:05 am

Thanks for the tips. Will give the songs a listen.

Since you mentioned ranking them, I've started listening to them an album at a time rather than as one huge playlist. Alligator is the front runner just now for me and I've been listening to more of the earlier stuff.

I'm at that great stage where I'm starting to know the songs more and I'm getting favourites. I love the stage when you're discovering the band and really getting into them (before you know all the songs well).

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#4

Post by mightysparks » February 16th, 2013, 3:43 am

Yeah, I started listening to all the albums and EPs yesterday. Just have 2 more left and then you get a ranking of them all and all the songs :P
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#5

Post by mightysparks » February 16th, 2013, 6:11 am

Ok, just finished them all. I'd only listened to Alligator, Boxer and High Violet once each years ago. My usual way of discovering and exploring bands is like this: I randomly hear a song I like (in this case, Lemonworld), some time later, I check out their most listened to songs on Last.fm briefly on Youtube, if I love them immediately, I download them. If they don't immediately grab me, I ignore them. So, this is why I really need to start listening to albums more :P

Will need to listen to them more before these rankings solidify (the song rankings will change with every re-listen), but at the moment:

1. Alligator
2. High Violet
3. Boxer
4. The Virginia EP
5. The National
6. Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers
7. Cherry Tree EP

So far, the only consensus is that we all like Alligator a lot :P


And songs:
Spoiler: click to toggleShow
1. Lemonworld
2. Mr November
3. Karen
4. All the Wine
5. Terrible Love
6. Mistaken for Strangers
7. Apartment Story
8. Blank Slate
9. Forever After Days
10. Racing Like a Pro
11. Anyone's Ghost
12. Sorrow
13. Cold Girl Fever
14. Friend of Mine
15. Son
16. Trophy Wife
17. Sugar Wife
18. Slipping Husband
19. Anna Freud
20. Secret Meeting
21. Watching You Well
22. Afraid of Everyone
23. Pay For Me
24. Daughters Of The Soho Riots
25. All Dolled-Up In Straps
26. Fake Empire
27. Conversation 16
28. Little Faith
29. ADA
30. Santa Clara
31. Bloodbuzz Ohio
32. Rest of Years
33. England
34. John's Star
35. Slow Show
36. Baby, We'll Be Fine
37. About Today
38. Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks
39. Runaway
40. American Mary
41. Cherry Tree
42. Looking for Astronauts
43. Guest Room
44. Without Permission
45. Tall Saint
46. Brainy
47. Squalor Victoria
48. Lit Up
49. Fashion Coat
50. Murder Me Rachael
51. 90-Mile Water Wall
52. Lucky You
53. Gospel
54. You've Done It Again, Virginia
55. Green Gloves
56. The Perfect Song
57. 29 Years
58. Mansion on the Hill
59. City Middle
60. Abel
61. Beautiful Head
62. Val Jester
63. Wasp Nest
64. Start a War
65. Patterns of Fairytales
66. Available
67. The Geese of Beverly Road
68. Cardinal Song
69. It Never Happened
70. Thirsty
71. Theory of the Crows
72. Bitters & Absolut
73. A Reasonable Man (I Don't Mind)
Glad I did that now. Ever since I listened to The Boomtown Rats discography last year, I've been more interested in going through albums. I'd never have heard Go Man Go! (my favourite) if I hadn't, since that song is apparently so unpopular that it only has 544 scrobbles on Last.fm and 153 of those are from me :(
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#6

Post by AdamH » February 16th, 2013, 6:08 pm

I have 76 songs in my playlist. Two are non-album singles (Think You Can Wait & Exile Vilify). What's missing on your list? I've excluded songs from EPs that had already been released on albums.

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#7

Post by mightysparks » February 16th, 2013, 6:10 pm

Um, I dunno. I didn't listen to any non-album songs. I may have forgotten to add a song to the list. :/
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#8

Post by AdamH » February 17th, 2013, 8:23 pm

Listening to my 76 song The National playlist again. Wow, I love Lucky You so much. Almost feel like singing along in the library :ermm:

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#9

Post by mightysparks » February 17th, 2013, 8:25 pm

That reminds me of one time I was on the train and listening to 'Toeing the Line' and I must've forgotten I was in public coz I was tapping away and almost jumped out of my skin when the train cop bloke tapped me on the shoulder to check my ticket. Now I'm doubly aware of what I'm doing to make sure I don't start doing stuff :P
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#10

Post by mightysparks » February 17th, 2013, 8:34 pm

And to stay on topic, I put the first 30 odd songs which I liked the most in my music folder and slowly whittled down the list to what currently grabs me the most (my usual process). Down to these:

6. Mistaken for Strangers
7. Apartment Story
8. Blank Slate
9. Forever After Days
10. Racing Like a Pro
11. Anyone's Ghost
12. Sorrow
13. Cold Girl Fever
14. Friend of Mine
15. Son
20. Secret Meeting
21. Watching You Well
26. Fake Empire
30. Santa Clara
32. Rest of Years

(the first 5 I already knew and loved). Weird how different your opinion can be after a second/third listen. Loving 6-11.
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#11

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 12:44 am

Favourite songs at the moment:

Lucky You
About Today
Secret Meeting
Mr. November
Bloodbuzz Ohio

So glad I finally discovered a new favourite band.

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#12

Post by lampadatriste » March 5th, 2013, 1:49 am

That's a near perfect top 5 :wub: I could replace Bloodbuzz Ohio with All the Wine and make it my personal top. For me Lucky You and About Today are the greatest songs about heartbreak/ broken up relationship ever. And the opening of Secret Meeting still gives me the chills.

When I showed my younger brother this band in 2006 I sent him a folder with the songs from Alligator which he kept and listened to on his mp3 player, and eventually it became one his favourite bands too. 2 or 3 years later we went to see them on concert and they closed with Mr. November, sung among the audience with incredible energy and the whole room went nuts. Except my brother: it appears the copy I sent him lacked that track and he simply had never listened to the song before. I will never forgive myself for that.

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#13

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 2:05 am

The top three are my favourite overall and the rest kind of vary depending on what I've been listening to recently. Mr. November has become a favourite in the past few days.

I'm going to try to make a top three or five from each album. I've mainly been listening to Sad Songs/Cherry Tree/Alligator.

Funny story about Mr. November. That makes me really wish I could go to one of their gigs.

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#14

Post by mightysparks » March 5th, 2013, 3:42 am

I don't mind About Today, but I don't really like Lucky You. I tend to change my mind on some songs when I listen to them again some time later though. I didn't like Secret Meeting or Fake Empire at all when I first listened to them years ago, but now I love both. I just gotta wait until I get sick of the songs in my playlist and then I'll listen to the albums again :P

My top 20 is more or less the same as before:
1. Lemonworld
2. Mr November
3. Karen
4. All the Wine
5. Terrible Love
6. Mistaken for Strangers
7. Anyone's Ghost
8. Blank Slate
9. Apartment Story
10. Forever After Days
11. Racing Like a Pro
12. Friend of Mine
13. Fake Empire
14. Son
15. Sorrow
16. Secret Meeting
17. Cold Girl Fever
18. Santa Clara
19. Rest of Years
20. Baby, We'll Be Fine
That makes me really wish I could go to one of their gigs.
Thanks for reminding me about me missing those tickets :'( :'( :'(
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#15

Post by lampadatriste » March 5th, 2013, 12:13 pm

They will be touring Europe the whole Summer, I bet you'll both have the chance to see them.
I'm lucky enough to have seen 4 The National gigs since 2007. They've been to Portugal nearly every year since 2005.

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#16

Post by lampadatriste » March 5th, 2013, 12:16 pm

Not counting the High Violet songs, your top is awesome

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#17

Post by mightysparks » March 5th, 2013, 3:17 pm

I'm hoping they'll chuck in some England dates. There's no way in hell I'm letting more tickets slip through my fingers :P

On another note, there are only 5 bands in the world that I like 20+ songs from; The Beatles, OMD, ELO, The National and Green Day. I've seen Green Day live, The Beatles are dead, I'm seeing OMD a week after I arrive in the UK... so it's just ELO and The National I have left to see live :woot:
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#18

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 3:33 pm

I was looking at the tour dates and noticed this:

14 JUNE: YONGE-DUNDAS SQUARE, TORONTO, CANADA / FREE SHOW - NXNE.COM

I will be in Toronto at that point! I need to look into this now. It's the day before my cousin's wedding but that's fine. It's a "free show". How does this work? How do I go to it?

And, yeah, they are doing European dates but no UK ones. If they were in Scotland or England then I'd try to go obviously.
Last edited by AdamH on March 5th, 2013, 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#19

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 3:46 pm

I mean do I need tickets even though it's free or can you just turn up?

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#20

Post by mightysparks » March 5th, 2013, 3:55 pm

It looks like you can just show up.
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#21

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 3:56 pm

THIS WOULD BE AMAZING

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#22

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 4:39 pm

Not sure how possible it is. Turns out it's like 45 minutes away from where I'll be and it's the night before the wedding. :(

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#23

Post by mightysparks » March 5th, 2013, 4:41 pm

Skip the wedding :whistling:
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#24

Post by brokenface » March 5th, 2013, 4:41 pm

intothewild on Mar 5 2013, 09:39:39 AM wrote:Not sure how possible it is. Turns out it's like 45 minutes away from where I'll be and it's the night before the wedding. :(
45 minutes is not long to see your favourite band!

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#25

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 4:44 pm

brokenface on Mar 5 2013, 09:41:48 AM wrote:
intothewild on Mar 5 2013, 09:39:39 AM wrote:Not sure how possible it is. Turns out it's like 45 minutes away from where I'll be and it's the night before the wedding. :(
45 minutes is not long to see your favourite band!
I know though I have no idea how I'll get there. I'm not even sure exactly where I'm staying. I think I'll be in Hamilton and then in Oakville closer to the wedding. Hamilton is even further away. "Hey, second cousin's dad, could you give me a lift to Toronto please? I know it's your daughter's wedding tomorrow but this is very important. Oh, and could you also watch the gig with me/sit in the car waiting for me so you could take me back too? Cheers".

I guess public transport is a possibility too.

I'm not that keen on getting back really late the night before the wedding either. Ah well, I'll see what happens.
Last edited by AdamH on March 5th, 2013, 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#26

Post by brokenface » March 5th, 2013, 5:01 pm

where there's a will there's a way (and other such clichés) :D

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#27

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 7:42 pm

Lauren and Lampa, what's your ranking for the songs on Alligator?

I'm working mine out just now and I'll post it tonight.

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#28

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 9:10 pm

Might abandon the rankings. Way too hard.

If you like Alligator you should check out the B-sides from that era:

The Thrilling of Claire
Driver, Surprise Me
Keep It Upstairs (re-worked as Blank Slate on The Virginia EP)
Warm Singing Whores
You've Done It Again, Virginia (also re-worked for The Virginia EP)

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#29

Post by lampadatriste » March 5th, 2013, 9:18 pm

It's a bit difficult to order from Baby We'll Be Fine to Daughters of the SoHo Riots, but it's an attempt.


Secret Meeting
All the Wine
Mr. November
Abel
Baby, We'll Be Fine
Looking for Astronauts
The Geese of Beverly Road
Karen
Val Jester
Daughters of the SoHo Riots
City Middle
Lit Up
Friend of Mine

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#30

Post by lampadatriste » March 5th, 2013, 9:28 pm

Adam, why don't you ask your cousin if he knows anyone in town, maybe a wedding guest, who could take you to the concert? It's a long shot, but I'd try that.
It seems strange that they don't have any UK, Ireland or Portugal dates. Maybe there's a chance they'll schedule some more July dates.

I always forget the B-Sides. I'm familiar with the ones on the Virginia EP, but the rest I think I never heard, only maybe live. Last.fm tells me I've listened to Driver, Surprise Me twice, though I can't recall anything. Will check it out. :thumbsup:

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#31

Post by AdamH » March 5th, 2013, 9:39 pm

lampa on Mar 5 2013, 02:28:53 PM wrote:Adam, why don't you ask your cousin if he knows anyone in town, maybe a wedding guest, who could take you to the concert? It's a long shot, but I'd try that.
It seems strange that they don't have any UK, Ireland or Portugal dates. Maybe there's a chance they'll schedule some more July dates.

I always forget the B-Sides. I'm familiar with the ones on the Virginia EP, but the rest I think I never heard, only maybe live. Last.fm tells me I've listened to Driver, Surprise Me twice, though I can't recall anything. Will check it out. :thumbsup:
There is an Ireland date but I wouldn't get a flight to another country just for a gig.

My cousin is a girl but yeah I could ask. It's just that this is the night before the wedding and I don't feel particularly comfortable about asking for any favours on that day when there will be so much else on. If this was any day other than the wedding/day before then I'd go for sure but this will make it more difficult. I'm just grateful to be having this trip; anything else is a bonus.

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#32

Post by lampadatriste » March 6th, 2013, 12:16 am

You're right, it might come off as rude, there's never enough care in those situations.

I just remembered you watched Lost too (at least Lauren did) so I can tell you my strategy to get through Friend of Mine without skipping it: I pretended it was some sort of message that Jack or Desmond sent Locke mid-season 2, when he went bore hunting/whatever he did back then, wasn't anywhere to be found when the button needed to be pushed and eventually met Ben, the untrustworthy man with the ballon.

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#33

Post by Kasparius » March 6th, 2013, 1:16 am

intothewild on Mar 5 2013, 02:39:29 PM wrote:There is an Ireland date but I wouldn't get a flight to another country just for a gig.
I flew from South of France to London to see Prince.

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#34

Post by mightysparks » March 6th, 2013, 3:23 am

I love Friend of Mine :( Alligator rankings:
Mr November
Karen
All the Wine
Friend of Mine
Secret Meeting
Baby, We'll Be Fine
Daughters Of The Soho Riots
Looking for Astronauts
Lit Up
City Middle
Abel
Val Jester
The Geese of Beverly Road

I'm flying to Ireland for the night to see The Boomtown Rats, I was going to do the same thing with The National except I missed out on tickets. It's so damn cheap and quick to travel around the UK and Europe that I don't mind flying out to see a concert :P I might change my mind once I'm living off UK wages, but for now, I'm quite happy with it :D
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#35

Post by AdamH » March 6th, 2013, 4:03 am

My list will be closer to lamps's. I like The Geese of Beverly Road :(

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#36

Post by mightysparks » March 6th, 2013, 4:06 am

Even when people like the same band I like, we still can't agree on anything :'(
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#37

Post by AdamH » March 6th, 2013, 4:14 am

At least we agree on Mr November though it won't be first on my list.

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#38

Post by lampadatriste » March 6th, 2013, 2:58 pm

That song was probably one of the last I learned to appreciate, partly for the lyrics. A man in his late 30s saying things like "we'll fight like girls. we'll run like we're awesome, totally genius. We're the heirs of the glittering world" finally made so much sense.

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#39

Post by AdamH » March 6th, 2013, 10:49 pm

Almost finished my ranking for Alligator. It seems to change after each listen. I can't make my mind up on Daughters of the Soho Riots. I used to really like it.

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#40

Post by AdamH » March 6th, 2013, 10:57 pm

Here's my ranking (for now):

Secret Meeting
Mr. November
Baby We'll Be Fine
The Geese of Beverly Road
Looking for Astronauts
All the Wine
Lit Up
Daughters of the Soho Riots
Abel
City Middle
Val Jester
Friend of Mine
Karen

Next up, I'm ranking Cherry Tree.

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