ALBUM REVIEW: The Walkmen – Lisbon

walkmenlisbon
Need more awesome? Listen to our FAVORITE SONGS OF 2014. Make sure you don't miss any tunes: FOLLOW US ON TWITTER.

ALBUM REVIEW: The Walkmen   <i>Lisbon</i>

STREET DATE: 09.14.10 | EMUSICALBUM REVIEW: The Walkmen   <i>Lisbon</i> | AMAZON| INSOUND | ITUNES

RATE GEMINI:
[STARRATER]

The Walkmen – “Stranded”

Since their 2002 debut “Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone,” New York/Philadelphia based The Walkmen have discreetly evolved, with each recording becoming more subtle and simplistic, stripping their music down to the bare essentials. 2008’s noteworthy You & Me sounds eons away since their inception as a band, yet it is merely a transitional record from its predecessor, A Hundred Miles Off. Ergo, after hearing Lisbon, the band’s sixth LP in eight years, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that it is the most straightforward record the ensemble has ever come out with. The Walkmen have always been keen on using vintage instruments like grand pianos and various sorts of brass; Lisbon is no exception.

Named after the capital of Portugal, which the band visited twice whilst writing the lyrics for the album, Lisbon is heavily influenced by classical music: “Torch Song” an oldies waltz, “While I Shovel The Snow,” a wistful ballad, “Woe Is Me,” and “Angela Surf City” venerable rock n roll ditties. “Stranded,” the first single off the album, is a trumpet heavy ballad, inspired by timeless New Orleans jazz from the 1950s. It shows. ‘Tis a bold move to release a song like “Stranded” as a first single, particularly for a band who gained mainstream affection with noisy pop rock anthems “The Rat” and “Little House of Savages.” But The Walkmen could not be swayed to release another pop rock record, especially as a followup to You & Me; their determination to craft delicate, thoughtful hymns has come to fruition on Lisbon, and the result is exhilarating.

Unlike its darker, gloomier predecessor, Lisbon is uplifting; urging you to go out there and experience the world. On “Juveniles” frontman Hamilton Leithauser sings “I am a good man/by any count/And I see better things to come;” on heartbreaker “Blue As Your Blood,” he remains positive: “The Lord came down and said to me/Throw off your worries and be at peace.” Though the group has thoroughly transformed over the last few years, The Walkmen continue to commemorate the usage of slap-back guitars, a sound that has become more eminent in their music; apparent throughout Lisbon in its entirety. A record without hidden meanings, Lisbon is not intended to make you think twice and understand the perpetual notion of its existence; no, Lisbon is a record solely committed to music, nothing more and nothing less.

75 — [Rating Scale]

What did you think?
 1  1  0  0
arcade fire festi
Videos

Featuring the band alongside Peter Gabriel, Fleet Foxes, Andrew Garfield, the National, and more.

willow smith three
Music

Plus a new single called “Cares.”

avey tare
Videos

Director Abby Portner pays homage to classic horror movies.

Nas-The-Season-608x608
Music

Premiered yesterday at Run the Jewels RTJ2 release party.

flying lotus ready err not
Videos

Be warned – it’s pretty graphic and definitely NSFW.

arcs now you know
Videos

With another, less body-horrific Jesse Kanda video.

PJ+Harvey
Music

For the British gangster drama Peaky Blinders.

Lil-Boosie-Life-After-Deathrow
MP3

Features collabs with Trey Songz, Shy Glizzy and more

She and Him
Music

Not the Cyndi Lauper song you’re probably thinking of.