Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Walkmen Wave

Over a decade after their inception, The Walkmen haven't lost even a fraction of their intrigue. If you've ever owned a Walkmen album or caught a live show only to see lead singer Hamilton Leithauser effortlessly hanging off the microphone stand while the addictive rock pours out from behind him, you'll understand the magic of their longstanding collaboration all of this time later. This NYC indie-rock collective have so successfully pulled off a diverse and continually thought-provoking discography; one that will be forever chock full of likeable riffs and Leithauser's coined croon, but one that's also now grown from angsty post-punk to this wonderfully mature and increasingly powerful rock sound. After keeping a close eye on them all of these years, their recent release is obvious proof that growing up has been very, very good to The Walkmen.

Evidence of the latter can be found on the back cover of their the newly released Heaven - which features has a photo of the rockers and their toddlers - as well as Leithauser's warm messages to his longtime mate on the title track ("Don’t leave me, you’re my best friend/ All of my life, you’ve always been"). On their sixth studio album, aging has come with a content sound that's just as commanding as the noisier rambunctious tunes they penned when their rocker lives inevitably didn't have as much enlightenment and meaning - pre-adulthood, marriage and children. The musical serenity of the veterans heard on this album, coupled with their ever-present chemistry and melodic knack, secures what I've heard from Heaven as some of my favourites this year. Here are a few of the new up-tempo new songs, which have been on near-constant rotation in my life this week:

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