The National | A Review of High Violet

Over the years New York’s The National has released several albums, the last of which came in 2007 with Boxer, an album that lacked much of the luster its predecessor captured. The 2005 Alligator, was for most, the height of The National’s musical offerings. Cuts like Baby, We’ll Be Fine and Karen are some of the best out of The National’s song catalogue and they both can be found on Alligator. What The National has always been up against are those who say that lead singer’s Matt Berninger voice is overpowering and consumes the majority of every song the band has released, the baritone’s voice rarely seem to break from a monotone position. The first half of High Violet the latest release of the band is a different story, Berninger pulls back on the vocal side of things and allows the other parts of this band to shine.

As a band The National has slowly been breaking into a more public view. Once an indie darling, the band known among the more snooty indie band aficionados as the New York band with deep voiced lead singer, with influences that seemingly stemmed from a more British style of music. As the years wore on since the band made their first album back in the late 90s, The National and their music has become more recognizable to the average music listeners ear. And with the impressive release of High Violet the band obviously still has gas left in the tank.

The new album quietly draws you in as a listener, partly to prepare you for some somber lyrical narratives, but also to stylishly introduce you to one of The National’s best albums to date. If High Violet were to come on to strong at first you might brush it off but then it wouldn’t be High Violet, the album is an anthem for post rainy day blues. Unlike previous albums provided by this band, High Violet though dark in tone and content is notably more lighthearted than say Boxer or Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers. Key Tracks on High Violet, Anyone’s Ghost, Little Faith and Lemonword.

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