Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Never (again): an ambitious pop-rock concept album

The Never:

"The Sharpest Place"
(from Antarctica 2006. Buy it here.)

When I wrote about the Never's ambitious concept album/picture book Antarctica back in March, I was under the impression that it had already been released. (Their recent performance was billed as a CD release show, so not an entirely unwarranted assumption...) Turns out, no -- Trekky Recordsjust put it out this week. It's worth revisiting now, because I'm still impressed by the scope of the project, and the mature, theatrical pop/rock that it produced. They recently made "The Sharpest Place" available for download -- it starts off as a pensive piano ballad, then builds into something much more dramatic. "Cavity" is a repeat from the earlier post -- a crunchy pop song.

As this review in the Independent notes (scroll to the bottom), the story may be a bit opaque, and the some of the lyrics push the limits of sincerity, but the music here is compelling. I have lately been thinking about how my enjoyment of music is mainly sonic -- unless the lyrics are insanely awful, they don't register too much, and sometimes not even then. The Never have outstanding melodies, complex arrangements, and an extremely appealing sound, which is more than enough in my book.

The Never are scheduled to be on WUNC's State of Things tomorrow (7/28) tomorrow at noon (that show often has great musical guests but horrible interviewers -- often worth it for the in-studio performances, though) and at Shakori Hills tomorrow night.


At 2:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark, you were correct in thinking The Never released the album in March. They did a local release, and it's been available at shows and in stores since that projection-and-music show at The Artscenter around the time of SXSW. This is the nationally distributed release, I think.

At 7:18 PM, Blogger brYan said...

Mark, you did that post on The Sammies,which we loved, and now two on The Never (MoRisen alums) so thanks for that. I think the first album is good too, though Antarctica is definately more cohesive.

-bryan @ MoRisen

At 12:24 PM, Blogger Martin Orrick Anderson said...

Yes, indeed, we released Antarctica locally back in March, and July 25 was our national release. Sorry for any confusion. Thanks Mark for the kind words.

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