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 American Slang album - personal reviews

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Stalls_Standing
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Mon Apr 26, 2010 8:28 am

One thing that I found it that you know when it's live and theres bits of silence in a song that Brian will fill with improvisation. This record, there silence is just filled with more lyrics so it feels more live vocally to me. If this makes any sense at all.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Mon Apr 26, 2010 9:17 am

These reviews sound very promising but I've always had the tradition of waiting for a hard copy for highly anticipated albums. Can't wait to hear it though!
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Tue Apr 27, 2010 6:12 pm

Hmm, after listening to the album for the last week and a bit I have to say i'm disappointed with it. Don't get me wrong, it's a good album with some standout tracks but overall I found it to be a letdown, probably because I loved the T59S so much and hoped they'd create something even better. As it stands, a lot of the songs sound too similar and lack any ambition to stray away from the standard "Gaslight" sound. Even Brians lyrics, which I usually love, are a step down from T59s, Senor and a lot of the tracks off SoS.

Still love the band but I hope they have a lot more ambition when they get to following up this album and maybe experiment a bit more because when they do on American Slang, particularly on The Queen of Lower Chelsea, The Diamond Church Street Choir and We Did It When We Were Young they make brilliant songs. I'd rate the album 3/5.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:24 pm

Alrighty then...

American Slang: The first track I heard, and it made me think "Shit, this is going to be one damn good record!" It's a good, solid song, but I think they've probably done a lot better. Still, it gets a nice 8/10, and I reckon it'll be cracking live.

Stay Lucky: Up there with my all-time favourites, and I love the line "Speak soon, Stay Lucky" a hell of a lot, along with the way Brian sings "When your knees/Got so weak" One of the strongest tracks easily. 10/10.

Bring It On.: A grower, for sure. Wasn't overfond of it first time I heard it, but the more I listened to it the more I liked it. Quite epic, love the line "Give me the children you wanna raise" in particular. 9/10.

The Diamond Church Street Choir: Oh wow. Fucking wow. The first time I heard this, I couldn't quite believe it. Sounds nothing like anything they've ever done before, and yet instantly TGA as well, which is odd. Reminds me a lot of Wild, Innocent, E Street Shuffle-era Springsteen, but even better. 10/10.

The Queen Of Lower Chelsea: I love the lead guitar line in this one, but overall I'm not too sure if it's ever gonna be a favourite. Lyrically it's pretty strong, but then again there isn't a Gaslight song that has bad lyrics. 8/10

Orphans: I dunno about this one either. It sounds a lot like something off Sink Or Swim, but I don't know if it would actually replace anything on that record for me. It's not bad though, maybe it'll grow on me more. 7/10.

Boxer: Instantly loved it, same as Diamond. The intro threw me a bit, but as soon as it kicked in I thought it was brilliant. I also now love the intro now that I know what's coming. Good times. 10/10.

Old Haunts: Lyrical contender for the strongest song on the album. Grew on me quite a lot, packs a real punch and it's probably the most Springsteen-esque song on the album along with Diamond, as much as the band are probably tired of being mentioned along with Bruce. 9/10.

The Spirit Of Jazz: Not really listened to it that much yet, but it's grown on me a little. Would be good live, I reckon. 7/10

We Did It When We Were Young: Liked it the first time, loved it the first time, at this point I could make love to it. It's beautiful, it's like the best U2 song ever made in some ways, and I like U2. Lyrically it blows me away, the lines "And I missed you for so long, when we were lions, lovers in combat, faded like your name on those jeans that I burned..." reminds me of my girlfriend, which is always good. Could very well make me cry live. 10/10.

All in all, I'd give it 9/10 at this point, but I think it could easily grow to a 10. Dunno if it'll ever take over The '59 Sound in my affectons though.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Thu May 20, 2010 3:41 am

anyone else think orphans sounds a bit like the archers bows have broken by brand new?
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Thu May 27, 2010 5:18 pm

I finally gave in and listened! I've had this sitting on my computer, for over a month. But I finally decided to listen to "Boxer" yesterday on their Myspace page, and I fucking loved it so much, it was all over then. I went and listened to the whole thing...I'll just say it was my birthday present to myself.

I love it. Still not sure where I'd place it on a scale of one to ten, or compared to their other records, but it's definitely great having some new Gaslight music. I'd say "Boxer" is my favorite, even more than "Bring It On", I just love everything about the song-- the guitar, the bass, the lyrics, the overall vibe of the song, I've listened to it so many times. "Old Haunts" is pretty great, too. I really love the guitar, on the whole record in general, it stands out to me. Wish I could elaborate more, but I don't play guitar.

I can't wait to hear all these songs live.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Thu May 27, 2010 7:11 pm

steph wrote:
I finally gave in and listened!

Good on you. I knew you would succumb eventually.

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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Thu May 27, 2010 10:00 pm

I'd say this album is a grower. Whereas all other releases have been so immediate (Boomboxes,Senor,Great Expectations) this album is not so. Some of the songs do have the risk of sounding very similar.


But those mediocre points aside, I love this record. It took a while for me to get into, and it would have had to be the greatest record ever made to better The 59 Sound, and it's not. But that's no dissapointment. All the songs on this record are at a consistent level of brilliance. I can't quite pick a favourite yet, but I am happy with the record.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 3:11 am

steady now steady now wrote:
steph wrote:
I finally gave in and listened!

Good on you. I knew you would succumb eventually.

haha yeah. im really quite impressed with myself, i normally have no willpower whatsoever. so, good on me! haha
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 4:34 am

I was one of the ones that listened to the album ASAP......just could not resist! I pretty much enjoyed it from the start (first/second listen), which appears to be the opposite for others, as I hear quite a few on here state that the album is a "grower" and requires time to get use to. For me, since I liked it so quickly and played it almost daily, I am now attempting to avoid it until the release of the official version of the album/I obtain my preorder because I do not want to get sick of it or "play it out".

Overall, I really like the album! Is it better than The 59 Sound? No, but I don't think anything would have been either. Honestly, I know they say different, but in making this album, I don't even think they truly believed they could top that album. I believe there confidence is now growing though, as they are relatively young and just starting to come in to their own.

What I really like about the album is it's theme, subject matter, lyrical content & quality and the album's cohesiveness. They do a great job at integrating the songs to fit the underlying meaning of the album. What's most impressive about this is that they manage to do so while still avoiding having all the songs sound the same. While they come together to form American Slang, there is still some variety in my opinion.

Also, I like the direction that they went with this album, in terms of sound. It is a progression, introducing some new elements, but also very much still incorporates aspects of Sink or Swim, Senor and the Queen, and The 59 Sound, which is great! I want them to evolve (nothing drastic) in terms of sound but still stay true to who they are/their roots, which this album does in my opinion. I will say that American Slang shows their Bruce influence more than prior albums, which is something I thought they were trying to get away from. Personally, I can care less about that; it doesn't bother me one bit. Sure there is Bruce in their music but they clearly have an identity/sound of their own in my mind.

My favorite/strongest tracks include "Boxer", "Old Haunts", "Orphans", "The Spirit of Jazz", and "Bring It On". I am starting to really connect with "The Queen of Lower Chelsea"! "We Did It When We Were Young" is slowly becoming sort of a grower but still one of the weakest tracks in my opinion. Both "Stay Lucky" and "The Diamond Church Street Choir" are just average songs on the album to me (I know I'll get some shit for that comment, as so many enjoy TDCSC). Lastly, "American Slang" while a good representation of the album, is definitely the worst song on the album and a below average song for TGA overall (not lyrically).

In regards to the album's negative features, most noticeable was the length and limited number of tracks. Too many artists these days are doing 10 song albums. Not a fan! My other complaint is the order in which the songs are listed. I know some will disagree with me, but the second half of the album is superior. As I stated above, my four favorite tracks are #6, 7, 8, and 9. That's a problem when trying to listen to an album in it's entirety from start to finish (like I can with their other 3 albums). Again, there is some variety on the album but it's just not mixed up/separated enough. I usually just skip around when listening. Lastly, I'm disappointed that they did not put the bonus song on the CD (or at least I don't think it's included).

Overall, the album is pretty damn good as a whole! I certainly recommend it. Disregarding the TGA's previous work, I would give this album a 9/10! However, in measuring "American Slang" with prior TGA releases in mind, it would be more along the lines of a 7 or 8/10. I guess I have it up there pretty even with "Sink or Swim" in terms of likeability, but not as great as "The Senor and the Queen" or "The 59 Sound", which are both next to perfect in my mind! It will be interesting to see how well it does though, in terms of sales and likeability (to hardcore, average, and possible new fans). I wonder how the band will view it a year from now? Lets all hope it does great!

Apologize for the long post. Hope to see other's reviews, comments, concerns, etc.
 
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 9:41 am

STEPH!!! You broke down and succumbed. I'm still haven't listened--gotta be one of the only ones-- but I am glad to hear your initial glowing commentary. I remain optimistic about this one, only a couple more weeks to go. I've read so many user reviews, that I kinda feel like I've already listened...

Great reveiw / feedback Carryon8....I enjoy reading everyone's perception on how it stacks up to their other CD's...
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 12:11 pm

Thanks for your long and honest review. Have you thought of signing up?

carryon8 wrote:
I My other complaint is the order in which the songs are listed. I know some will disagree with me, but the second half of the album is superior.

I too have wondered about the track order. It seems that it was done with vinyl in mind, with both sides finishing on a slower track and side B opening with a stormer.

A:
1. American Slang
2. Stay Lucky
3. Bring It On
4. The Diamond Church Street Choir
5. The Queen of Lower Chelsea


B:
6. Orphans
7. Boxer
8. Old Haunts
9. The Spirit of Jazz
10. We Did It When We Were Young


I don't find the order ideal for CD though. I still smile every time about what Tom Petty did on Full Moon Fever ('attantion CD listeners!').

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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 1:24 pm

Reinvent good times wrote:
STEPH!!! You broke down and succumbed. I'm still haven't listened--gotta be one of the only ones-- but I am glad to hear your initial glowing commentary. I remain optimistic about this one, only a couple more weeks to go. I've read so many user reviews, that I kinda feel like I've already listened...

Great reveiw / feedback Carryon8....I enjoy reading everyone's perception on how it stacks up to their other CD's...

Still haven't listened to the whole thing yet. Don't listen to Boxer yet if you haven't already. It makes the waiting 100 times harder.

Sink or Swim had a similar pattern with songs 6 and 12 being slower. Maybe its just something Gaslight does.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 3:31 pm

CluckyB wrote:
Reinvent good times wrote:
STEPH!!! You broke down and succumbed. I'm still haven't listened--gotta be one of the only ones-- but I am glad to hear your initial glowing commentary. I remain optimistic about this one, only a couple more weeks to go. I've read so many user reviews, that I kinda feel like I've already listened...

Great reveiw / feedback Carryon8....I enjoy reading everyone's perception on how it stacks up to their other CD's...

Still haven't listened to the whole thing yet. Don't listen to Boxer yet if you haven't already. It makes the waiting 100 times harder.

Sink or Swim had a similar pattern with songs 6 and 12 being slower. Maybe its just something Gaslight does.

I've only heard American Slang, the song, once, and nothing else. I was not duly impressed with that one...So I'm glad to hear that about Boxer.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 6:19 pm

CluckyB wrote:
Reinvent good times wrote:
STEPH!!! You broke down and succumbed. I'm still haven't listened--gotta be one of the only ones-- but I am glad to hear your initial glowing commentary. I remain optimistic about this one, only a couple more weeks to go. I've read so many user reviews, that I kinda feel like I've already listened...

Great reveiw / feedback Carryon8....I enjoy reading everyone's perception on how it stacks up to their other CD's...

Still haven't listened to the whole thing yet. Don't listen to Boxer yet if you haven't already. It makes the waiting 100 times harder.

Sink or Swim had a similar pattern with songs 6 and 12 being slower. Maybe its just something Gaslight does.

You're so right, listening to "Boxer" only makes it harder!

Haha, I had all intentions of waiting, but I am not a patient person by any means, so I held out for a good month or so. I even heard "Bring It On" and as much as I love that song, I was still able to wait. And then I heard "Boxer" and it was so good! Some other people on here have posted much better reviews, I'm not so good at putting my thoughts in that form, I just say "I fucking loved it," and there you have it. It'll take me many more listens to decide what order I would place "American Slang" in terms of favorite to least favorite Gaslight records.

Good for you for holding out! It's only a couple weeks now til you can have it in your hands, officially.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 9:55 pm

Love this album. Listened to it quite a bit when it first leaked then tried to hold off waiting for the vinyl to show up. Now I'm kind of tired of waiting and listening again here and there.

Guess I'm one of the few (if theres any) that thinks this album is even better than 59 Sound. Only song I have a slight problem with is "American Slang", kind of bland sounding for Gaslight IMO. Every other track is great. One thing I have started to notice though is...about half the songs are insanely good and are pretty different than anything they've released before (Bring It On, etc) while the other half is kind of familiar and could of been right at home on 59 Sound, Senor or maybe even 1 or 2 would fit on to SoS. I kind of think they were scared to go all the way with this change (which I don't blame them for) but I think if they weren't and went totally for it it'd be a even greater record.

Side note: We Did It When We Were Young has actually got a ton of replay value from me than I had first thought it would get. GREAT closer, love it.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 11:17 pm

At the moment I do like it more than T59S. I played T59S in the car the other day and it just wasn't the same as it used to be.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Fri May 28, 2010 11:19 pm

carryon8 wrote:

In regards to the album's negative features, most noticeable was the length and limited number of tracks. Too many artists these days are doing 10 song albums. Not a fan!
 

Honestly, I love a short album. I love something that doesn't take a huge time commitment, and yet when I'm done, I can still say, "THAT WAS AWESOME!" Like SATQ. It's 12 minutes long so I play it all the time. I can hear it before I go to school or work.

35 minutes is about a perfect album for me...when they get over an hour, I'll tend to overlook songs near the end simply because I get tired while listening and don't always make it that far.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Sun May 30, 2010 11:56 pm

For me, this album is better than the '59 Sound. The first time I listened to '59 Sound, I loved it; it was like the first time I heard Pet Sounds or Born to Run, so you can use that as a reference point.

I actually met Brian before his solo show at the Bowery Ballroom in January, and when I asked him about the new album, the main point he kind of stressed to me was that he wanted to make something that was their own. Even though I think he was flattered with all of the comparisons to Springsteen and others, I feel like he wanted to make an album that sounded like The Gaslight Anthem, and not feel like he had to let his listeners know who his heroes were by name dropping and quoting lyrics.

That being said, when I listened to the album I heard something I hadn't heard before. Its completely original, without any lyric borrowing for the most part. You can tell where the influences come from, but its not being force fed to you with Springsteen quotes, or name dropping Tom Petty. Don't get me wrong, Bruce and Tom Petty are two of my favorite artists, but I enjoy seeing Brian step out and really mature as a songwriter on this album. The lyrics are full of imagery about moving on and not living in the past. "Old Haunts" especially drives home this point in my opinion. Even though "Bring It On" and "Diamond Church Street Choir" are my favorite tracks on the album I think that musically and lyrically "The Queen of Lower Chelsea" is the best track on the album. The echoey background vocals provide some of the best sound throughout the album, which is something they did on The '59 Sound as well (Old White Lincoln, Patient Ferris Wheel). Also, Alex's lead guitar is how I think a lead guitar should be. No flashy 80's crap metal solos, but a melodic accompaniment to the lead vocal that provides a backbone for their sound. He's got a great Johnny Marr or even Harrison like quality to his style of play which I love.

I feel like a lot of people wanted another '59 Sound, which could have easily been done. However, I believe this album is a step in the right direction for The Gaslight Anthem. In fact, I believe it to be their best album. They took some of the good things from all of their previous efforts, added some new ideas, and created a totally new and different sound. I think they really went for it with this album, and they got it. I think Brian may have taken his own advice when he sang "Stop
pacing around and waiting for some moment that might never arrive." They made it happen.
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Mon May 31, 2010 5:30 am

rem999 wrote:
For me, this album is better than the '59 Sound. ...

Thanks for this excellent review, rem999, and welcome to the board.

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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Wed Jun 02, 2010 5:10 am

Hi this is my first post on the forum. I write for a music magazine called The Music Fix and I reviewed the album adn thought you all might like a look!

http://www.themusicfix.co.uk/content/review/10626/the-gaslight-anthem.html
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:53 am

sundaygirl wrote:
Hi this is my first post on the forum. I write for a music magazine called The Music Fix and I reviewed the album adn thought you all might like a look!

[url=http://www.themusicfix.co.uk/content/review/10626/the-gaslight-anthem.html
http://www.themusicfix.co.uk/content/review/10626/the-gaslight-anthem.html[/quote[/url]]

I really enjoyed reading your 'grown up' take on this album, being of the pre-internet etc. generation myself.

I sure look forward to reading more from you on here.

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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:57 am

Thanks very much!
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Wed Jun 02, 2010 9:31 am

Yeh cool review , how do you get into reviewing for websites like that?
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PostSubject: Re: American Slang album - personal reviews   Wed Jun 02, 2010 9:37 am

I was headhunted! If you're interested in writing for the magazine there is a link I think at the bottom of the page about joining the team. No pay but lots of perks! Like reviewing Gaslight Anthem at the Manchester Academy! Woo hoo!
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