The National - High Violet

Limited Double Album 2LP Violet Heavyweight Vinyl

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High Violet is the fifth studio album by American indie rock band The National, released in May 2010 via 4AD Records.

The National, for those who are just coming in, is comprised of two sets of brothers - Bryce and Aaron Dessner, Scott and Bryan Devendorf - and Matt Berninger (plus shadow member Padma Newsom). 

The National have worn a lot of hats since their 2001 debut, but they’ve never been able to shake the rural, book-smart, quiet malevolence of the Midwest. High Violet navigates that lonely dirt road where swagger meets desperation like a seasoned tour guide, and while it may take a few songs to get going, there are treasures to be found for patient passengers. 

The National broke underground cover with 2005’s Alligator, and they’ve refined and arguably improved their output ever since. High Violet, following 2007’s excellent Boxer, again features orchestral embellishments. Its charms are subtle, its grip soft and easily shrugged by those who choose to pay it only passing attention. Live with it a while, though, and High Violet rewards patience with songs that colour one’s waking existence, becoming vivid nighttime narratives when curtains are drawn.

Matt Berninger’s lyrics, though tonally divisive, are incredibly engaging. His stories, delivered with wrenching sincerity, form the first point of entry for newcomers awaiting enlightenment. High Violet is an album characterised largely by absence, and displacement – of being someplace other than ideal. This extends from simple geography to the afterlife ruminations of “Anyone’s Ghost”, a song that blindsides with its switch from aloof coolness to an affecting concession of continued allegiance after death parts its players.

Album standout “Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks” might be the most perfect thing the band have ever committed to tape. For a set that peddles so purposefully in restraint, the unabashed sojourn into waters anthemic does come as a surprise, but it’s all the more memorable for it. When the lush string arrangement finally surges skyward on its second chorus the effect is blindsiding, shiver-inducing: lump-in-throat exhilarating in its splendour. 

To the casual listener, High Violet may sound pedestrian, but drama lies in the richly textured nuances that this album ultimately plays like a movie you’d never dream of breaking from. It’s a measured, brooding collection that does sound fine on first listen, but so much better on the fifth, and will still be offering fresh snippets of brilliance come the fiftieth.

Check out the tracks: “Bloodbuzz Ohio”; “Anyone’s Ghost” and “Conversation 16”.

This Limited Edition double LP housed in a gatefold sleeve with printed inner sleeves and PVC plastic sleeve, is pressed in the UK on Violet 180 gram heavyweight vinyl.

(652637300345)

Tracklisting:

 

 

Title

Time

A1

Terrible Love

4:39

A2

Sorrow

3:25

A3

Anyone’s Ghost

2:54

B1

Little Faith

4:36

B2

Afraid Of Everyone

4:19

B3

Bloodbuzz Ohio

4:36

C1

Lemonworld

3:23

C2

Runaway

5:33

C3

Conversation 16

4:18

D1

England

5:40

D2

Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks

4:12

SKU 652637300345
Record Label 4AD Records
Label / Model # Inertia
Catalogue Number CAD 3X03
Country UK - United Kingdom
Release Date (Year) 10 May 2010
Original Release Date (Year) 10 May 2010
Barcode # 652637300345
Shipping Weight 0.6450kg
Shipping Width 0.012m
Shipping Height 0.314m
Shipping Length 0.314m
Shipping Cubic 0.001183000m3
Type New
Format Limited Edition Double Album 2LP Records, 180 Gram Heavyweight Coloured Vinyl, Violet Vinyl, Gatefold Sleeve with Sliver and Gold Foil Lettering, Printed Inner Sleeves, Protective PVC Plastic Sleeve with Flap
Vinyl Colour Violet
Genre Rock
Genre Indie Rock
Genre Folk Rock
Genre Blues Rock
Format VINYL LP

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