The New Pornographers - Challengers

It was bound to happen eventually. The New Pornographers sound was going to have to develop past the power-pop perfection that Carl Newman had brought for three albums in a row. When I say power-pop perfection I mean that The New Pornographers packed enough great, catchy pop tunes on one album to last most bands an entire career. If you don't already own their first three albums (Mass Romantic, Electric Version, and Twin Cinema) already, please do yourself a favor and buy all three. I promise that you will discover one of your new favorite bands.

On their most recent effort, Challengers, The New Pornographers have continued more down the path tread by Carl Newman's solo album, The Great Wonder. Their guitar fueled tunes are rounded out with horns and strings but never delve into orchestral or chamber pop at all. In fact, the songs are just as addictive, it's just a bit more of a "grower" than their previous albums. Once again, Carl Newman is joined by fellow indie superstars Dan Bejar (Destroyer, Swan Lake) and Neko Case. There is just enough Dan Bejar on NP albums for me to not get tired of him (Destroyer albums can grate on me after a while). Also, if Neko Case is one of your lead vocalists on a few tracks and backup on the rest, you already have an advantage over every other band in existence. Challengers isn't as immediately engaging as their previous albums, but as a long time fan, I'd rather have an album from them that I can sit with for a long time to fully appreciate.

The New Pornographers will be playing in Lawrence at Liberty Hall on November 4th and the show will feature Neko Case.

1 comment:

Landon said...

I just had to post since Bobby is the only one to do so, I dig the blog Schram & Cheese.