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658143 Posts in 9262 Topics by 3396 Members Latest Member: - vlozan86 Most online today: 51 - most online ever: 494 (Jul 01, 2007, 02:59:53 PM)
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Author Topic: Weakerthans, The  (Read 6449 times)
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RoyBiggins
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Posts: 6506


« on: Sep 25, 2007, 09:18:06 AM »

The Weakerthans are a four-piece (and sometimes six-piece[1]) Canadian indie rock band that spends so much time in between releases that every time, I'm pretty sure they've broken up.  But then, they put out a new record, and I think "No way this one can be as good as the other ones."

And so far, I'm always wrong.

The new one came out today, and I just put it on for the first time.  So far, I feel wrong again.  Your thoughts?
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RoyBiggins
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Posts: 6506


« Reply #1 on: Sep 25, 2007, 09:20:28 AM »

I mean, I don't mean to shoot myself in the foot and overpraise this thing before I've heard it, but...I just don't know very many bands that are so consistently good to me.  Right now, I'm stuck between wanting to soak this album in for all it's worth, and a little twitchy that I may not sit down with a new Weakerthans record again until 2012.

Edit: I have heard the album now, and I am no longer worried.  It is good.
« Last Edit: Sep 25, 2007, 09:54:22 AM by RoyBiggins » Logged

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guavacris
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Posts: 173


« Reply #2 on: Sep 25, 2007, 10:21:26 AM »

oh man, I completely missed this. thank you!

edit: and they're touring! I should type out a string of happy vowels.
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lucky strike
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Posts: 3220


« Reply #3 on: Sep 25, 2007, 10:50:39 AM »

the weakerthans? am i 14 again?


the weakerthans are cool, though. they're cool hard.
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Greg Nog
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Posts: 21629


« Reply #4 on: Sep 25, 2007, 11:20:19 AM »

Oh, I had no idea they had a new album out.  Dang.  They are just some kind of fantastic, those lads.
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perry
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Posts: 393


« Reply #5 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:14:14 PM »

JKS's lyrics are an unassailable garment confounded by neither moth nor rust, magical mormon underwear for the mind and the loins. This new record is exceptional, too, and shocks me by its ability to unironically suckerpunch with songs about two things I generally couldn't care less about: cats and hockey.  WTFJKS.
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jebreject
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Posts: 27071


« Reply #6 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:29:12 PM »

WTFJKS = new favourite thing ever

Also the new album rules pretty hard, but it's not getting as much playtime around here as it deserves, because, well, new Angels of Light, new Akron/Family, new Devendra Banhart, new Thurston Moore, new High on Fire, new Two Gallants ...
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gboro
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Posts: 9


« Reply #7 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:29:56 PM »

I think the unfortunate thing about this band is that because of a) their penchant for power chords and b) thier on-going relationship with the free-falling Epitaph records, they get stuck with more immaturity than they actually deserve.  When they are on their game, they can craft some solid, if overly simple, stuff.

That being said, I'm not sure they're always on their game on the new album.  The spoken-word "Gump Worsley" seems like a ham-handed attempt to be taken seriously -- and push against the immaturity claims -- and while the title track could be the best song on the album, it bails out way too early and sounds rushed.  Same thing goes for "Big Foot!".  "On the other hand, "Tournament of Hearts" is a great song, and while I'd usually categorically condemn any song in which the narrator is a cat, the attempt here (their second with the cat Virtue) is at least partially successful when it gets to that big, distant sounding end.

It's too bad a band like this has to sit in limbo -- not arch or reflexive enough for the tight-jeaned indie kids, not "edgy" (whatever that means) enough for the painted-into-a-corner pop-punks -- because when they put their best foot forward, it is a pretty sweet stomp.
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gboro
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Posts: 9


« Reply #8 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:32:05 PM »

WTFJKS = new favourite thing ever

Also the new album rules pretty hard, but it's not getting as much playtime around here as it deserves, because, well, new Angels of Light, new Akron/Family, new Devendra Banhart, new Thurston Moore, new High on Fire, new Two Gallants ...

That new Akron/Family is one of the best things I've heard all year, with a big-ass scope and some nice, muscular diversions from their earlier work.  I'm unconvinced the new Banhart will be good, but we'll see.  I have a copy of Two Gallants on my coffee table, but haven't heard it yet, but I'm hoping they achieve some consistency with this one.
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jebreject
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Posts: 27071


« Reply #9 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:53:05 PM »

I'm lukewarm on the new Devendra Banhart. Some of the songs I like quite a bit, but overall I'm not sure about it. I'm giving it hella chances to redeem itself though, maybe more than it deserves. I'm still undecided as to whether I'll pick up an actual copy when I go to the record store today, but knowing me, I probably will anyway. The Akron/Family is fucking phenomenal, but at the same time, it's also the first AK-AK album that has songs I don't like on it. I think the best of the year so far is the new AOL, that or Wooden Wand's James and the Quiet. (This is all making it seem like all I listen to is weirdo folk music, which isn't the case at all, I swear! Hey guys, the first song on the new High on Fire is called "Fury Whip"! How fucking awesome is that!)

But um, seriously, the new Weakerthans rekkid is good, real good.
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das kranke Tier
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« Reply #10 on: Sep 25, 2007, 12:57:13 PM »

new AOL

???
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El_Josharino
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« Reply #11 on: Sep 25, 2007, 01:03:13 PM »

Angels of Light, which I'm actually listening to right now and it's real good.
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das kranke Tier
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Posts: 5894


« Reply #12 on: Sep 25, 2007, 01:07:47 PM »

Ahhh, I see.  I'm such a rabid fan that whenever I see those initials, I automatically think Archers of Loaf.  I almost shit just then when I saw Jeb's post.  Oh well...
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Greg Nog
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Posts: 21629


« Reply #13 on: Sep 25, 2007, 02:27:16 PM »

Before I listen, can anyone tell me if any of the songs are as soul-destroyingly good as the heartbreaking pop masterpiece that was "Our Retired Explorer"?
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Nick Ink
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Posts: 7018


« Reply #14 on: Sep 25, 2007, 03:24:08 PM »

The Akron/Family is fucking phenomenal, but at the same time, it's also the first AK-AK album that has songs I don't like on it.

Which ones don't you care for? Maybe I'll guess I've Got Some Friends?
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nonotyet
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Posts: 7691


« Reply #15 on: Sep 25, 2007, 03:38:44 PM »

Before I listen, can anyone tell me if any of the songs are as soul-destroyingly good as the heartbreaking pop masterpiece that was "Our Retired Explorer"?

On first listen, not quite. But they are real pretty.
« Last Edit: Sep 25, 2007, 03:42:25 PM by nonotyet » Logged
jebreject
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Posts: 27071


« Reply #16 on: Sep 25, 2007, 04:28:28 PM »

Which ones don't you care for? Maybe I'll guess I've Got Some Friends?

No, I like that song a LOT. It's the one directly after it that I don't care for, "Lake Song/New Ceremonial Music for Moms." I feel like "Crickets" is less than memorable as well, though I mean I still haven't really given the album a good "active" listen, though I've played it probably fifty times in the last month or whatever.
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jebreject
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Posts: 27071


« Reply #17 on: Sep 25, 2007, 04:29:02 PM »

Okay, listening now, I like "Crickets" a lot too. So it's just that other one, really.
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mountmccabe
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Posts: 2844


« Reply #18 on: Sep 25, 2007, 08:58:04 PM »

I am so happy that they are touring and also coming to Phoenix.  Yay for Saturday!

There are a lot of great songs on the new album.  I'ven't yet gone much further than that in my review.
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Trousers and Pat
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Posts: 2044


« Reply #19 on: Sep 25, 2007, 09:01:23 PM »

ooh ooh, I get to be the grump!

I do like the new Weakerthans, but I'm disappointed by the flat-sounding production- Reconstruction Site had a fair amount of sonic variety with all the horns and backwards parts, but this new one has more of a constant "band in a room" sound that makes me feel a bit tired after a while... That said, the songwriting is still there, and there are a few really heartbreaking moments nestled away in there. The part about the shallow breaths will usually get me.

Advancing my contrary platform, I don't like this new Akron/family at all. I had high hopes based on (1) the Angels of Light album, which is phenomenal, and (2) some live video I saw of the band. But I've tried listening a few times, but it's so hyper and busy, some kind of Active Happiness that feels really grating lately. And if I wanted that I'd go to Strawberry Jam first, probably... I'll try it again when I'm maybe in a better mood, but I dunno. It also needs more bass.

um, for balance, I do like the new Terminals, Adrian Orange, and Thurston albums.
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jebreject
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Posts: 27071


« Reply #20 on: Sep 25, 2007, 10:09:02 PM »

Man, you need to give Love is Simple another chance. I mean, I think the AOL record is better, but this one has a lot going for it, and it's far, far less busy than most of the songs on the split with AOL, or Meek Warrior, I think. Well, I mean, I don't know. Akron/Family is actually just kind of a busy bands. But there's some good meditative numbers on there, too. I don't know. I like it a lot. But Akron/Family is probably my favourite band in the world right now.

EDIT: Have you heard the other Akron/Family records, Pat?
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edison
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Posts: 4837


« Reply #21 on: Sep 26, 2007, 02:12:26 AM »

Someone needs to rename this thread Weakerthans, The-Akron/Family!

The Weakerthans album was in my I-can't-really-afford-this-right-now-but-I-will-make-an-effort-if-I-realize-it-is-totally-excellent list for this week, and I downloaded it yesterday and am listening for the second time, and shit, it's damn good. I have to figure out if it's so good I should buy it even if I'm going to be broke soon, but I'm afraid it might be.
« Last Edit: Sep 26, 2007, 02:14:46 AM by edison » Logged
chester
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Posts: 405


« Reply #22 on: Sep 26, 2007, 09:32:50 AM »

i pre-ordered the new weakerthans but it hasn't shown up yet, what the hell!
one would assume you'd get the record on the release date when you pre-order.
oh well, all good things to those who wait i guess. glad to hear you guys seem to like it though.
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YojimboMonkey
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Posts: 12034


« Reply #23 on: Sep 26, 2007, 09:36:10 AM »

I used to have a Weakerthans album, Reconstruction Site I think? and I mildly enjoyed it but it never really grabbed me by the scrote and demanded my attention.  If there were an album of theirs that was going to do that, which one would it be?
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edison
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Posts: 4837


« Reply #24 on: Sep 26, 2007, 10:53:50 AM »

i pre-ordered the new weakerthans but it hasn't shown up yet, what the hell!
one would assume you'd get the record on the release date when you pre-order.
oh well, all good things to those who wait i guess. glad to hear you guys seem to like it though.

Just out of curiosity, where did you order it?

Jim - in answer to your question I would have said Reconstruction Site - so maybe either this isn't a band for you or you need to spend more quality time with the record?

Anyway, everyone needs to listen to this song from the new record:
http://media.epitaph.com/theweakerthans/86877-reuniontour/suninanemptyroom.mp3
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