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Old 02-10-2014, 09:22 PM   #706
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Slow Show still floors me every time I hear it. If that outro doesn't get to you on some level, you probably have no soul.
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Old 02-10-2014, 09:25 PM   #707
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The inside of my wedding ring has the chorus of Slow Show engraved in it
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Old 02-10-2014, 09:40 PM   #708
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Boxer is unbelievable, especially the consistent lyrical theme running throughout it. That whole album is especially resonant with me at the moment. Berninger at his best I reckon.

The songs are quite short and snappy on Boxer, they don't ever feel as if they outstay their welcome, even the lesser tracks like Gospel and Start A War.

Green Gloves - Slow Show - Apartment Story sequence is one of the best sequences that I've ever heard. Could listen to those three on replay all day.
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Old 02-10-2014, 10:13 PM   #709
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The National - Trouble Will Find Anthony Fantano

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Originally Posted by iron yuppie View Post
Slow Show still floors me every time I hear it. If that outro doesn't get to you on some level, you probably have no soul.
Even I love that song (cos I hate everything). The fact that it's right before Aparment Story, yet I never skip it to get to AS (possibly my favorite song of theirs), means it's nothing short of fantastic.
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:13 PM   #710
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The middle 3 of Boxer (Slow Show -> Apartment Story -> Start a War) is my favorite moment in their entire discography, and by a good margin.
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Old 02-11-2014, 03:29 AM   #711
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The problem with Boxer is that it is anticlimactic. Unlike Alligator, Sad Songs or Trouble Will Find Me, records that have excellent final three or four songs (yes, Hard To Find rules), I just feel that the melancholy of Boxer starts to get really dull with those final three songs. And I don't dislike those tracks, which says enough about the quality of their output, but I just don't feel it is their most accomplished album do to it being slightly too monotonous.

And I agree that Alligator is their best precisely because you can find almost all kind of National in there.
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Old 02-11-2014, 03:34 AM   #712
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The problem with Boxer is that it is anticlimactic. Unlike Alligator, Sad Songs or Trouble Will Find Me, records that have excellent final three or four songs (yes, Hard To Find rules), I just feel that the melancholy of Boxer starts to get really dull with those final three songs. And I don't dislike those tracks, which says enough about the quality of their output, but I just don't feel it is their most accomplished album do to it being slightly too monotonous.

And I agree that Alligator is their best precisely because you can find almost all kind of National in there.

I'd agree with this, Alligator is superbly bookended. You don't really want an album tapering off, and I can see how Boxer could be considered to do so.
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Old 02-11-2014, 04:53 AM   #713
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I can't agree with that because of Ada. That's a hugely underappreciated gem in their discography.

I haven't really loved a closer on one of their albums since Mr November though. Gospel is very nice, but I wouldn't call it a highlight. Vanderlyle and Hard to Find sound pretty run of the mill to me. They've ended on a down note three times in a row now.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:11 AM   #714
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I disagree, because I'll take Ada and Gospel over some other, more universally loved combinations. I prefer that pair to geese*/city middle. Sure, Mr November finishes off the album in such a fashion where you're angry it's over and the only thing to do is go back and listen to the album again. But the drop off between when Abel ends and Mr November starts up is too drastic a change that I wind up liking how boxer ends better.


*i think geese is great, actually. It just kills off this depressed, drunk, seemingly increasingly out of control theme that all the wine and Abel set up Mr November is the culmination of that feeling for me, and breaking it up by sticking those two songs in between just sort of kills the mood. I know I'm pretty much the only one here who doesn't care for city middle.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:14 AM   #715
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I enjoy the Dexter-ish note that Boxer ends on. Armfuls of magazines? It's a deceptively soothing tune.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:45 AM   #716
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I disagree, because I'll take Ada and Gospel over some other, more universally loved combinations. I prefer that pair to geese*/city middle. Sure, Mr November finishes off the album in such a fashion where you're angry it's over and the only thing to do is go back and listen to the album again. But the drop off between when Abel ends and Mr November starts up is too drastic a change that I wind up liking how boxer ends better.


*i think geese is great, actually. It just kills off this depressed, drunk, seemingly increasingly out of control theme that all the wine and Abel set up Mr November is the culmination of that feeling for me, and breaking it up by sticking those two songs in between just sort of kills the mood. I know I'm pretty much the only one here who doesn't care for city middle.
You're not the only one. I totally agree with you here. Geese and City Middle are both solid tracks but putting them in between Abel and Mr November completely kills the vibe. I can't listen to the end of Alligator because of it.

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The problem with Boxer is that it is anticlimactic. Unlike Alligator, Sad Songs or Trouble Will Find Me, records that have excellent final three or four songs (yes, Hard To Find rules), I just feel that the melancholy of Boxer starts to get really dull with those final three songs. And I don't dislike those tracks, which says enough about the quality of their output, but I just don't feel it is their most accomplished album do to it being slightly too monotonous.

And I agree that Alligator is their best precisely because you can find almost all kind of National in there.
Totally agree with this as well, although I do really like Ada. But Racing Like a Pro and Gospel would go pretty close to being my two least favourite National songs.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:49 AM   #717
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The only tracks on Alligator that I don't care for are in the middle of the album. There are some serious pacing issues for a few songs, but it's smooth sailing from All the Wine on. City Middle and especially Geese are among my favorite National songs.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:53 AM   #718
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You're not the only one. I totally agree with you here. Geese and City Middle are both solid tracks but putting them in between Abel and Mr November completely kills the vibe. I can't listen to the end of Alligator because of it.
And I disagree with this. The National's rockers are sparse enough, so to put Abel and Mr. November back-to-back would be counterproductive in making a balanced mix of different moods that make Alligator so special.
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Old 02-11-2014, 06:00 AM   #719
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Can't agree. Whenever I do listen to Alligator, the second Abel ends I get impatient because there's 10 minutes of slower tempo before the awesome Mr November.

I remember when I first procured the album, the tracklisting was in alphabetical order, and when I corrected the running order I ended up liking it a bit less.

Abel
All the Wine
Baby We'll Be Fine
City Middle
Daughters of the Soho Riots
Friend of Mine
Karen
Lit Up
Mr November
Secret Meeting
The Geese of Beverley Road
Val Jester
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Old 02-11-2014, 06:03 AM   #720
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Val Jester as a closer though....ugh.
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