“Twin Cinema” — The New Pornographers

Twin Cinema

Angela bought me the lat­est album by the The New Pornog­ra­phers last month, despite her mild dis­com­fort with the band’s odd choice of name. After let­ting her hear a cou­ple of songs, she decid­ed they were okay after­all and even has a cou­ple loaded onto her iPod for bop­ping around the house to.

She pur­chased the song off of iTunes Music Store, which is where a lot of our music comes from these days1. I had heard about the album back over the sum­mer in an NPR piece about great sum­mer music, even though the album was­n’t even out yet. They played a 45–60 sec­ond snip of one of the songs. I had also lis­tened to each of the songs 30-sec­ond clips on iTMS and decid­ed I like what I heard.

I was then com­plete­ly blown away when I lis­tend to the album in its entire­ty. Each song is like an mul­ti-move­ment pop-sym­pho­ny. The song you are lis­ten­ing to at the begin­ning isn’t like the mid­dle or end, and the pro­gres­sion is both nat­ur­al and amaz­ing. Songs like “The Bleed­ing Heart Show” change and evolve in a way that would leave both pro­po­nents of Dar­win’s The­o­ry and I.D. stunned.

Also, the band has a very hard to pin down tax­on­o­my. They strum gui­tars and bang on key­boards like a true rock band, but also show the emtion of the mood­i­est of emo and indie rock. How­ev­er, I don’ t think I’d ever call them indie, since to the best of my knowl­edge, hey-la hey-la cho­rus­es are by def­i­n­i­tion, not allowed in indie rock (see also “The Bleed­ing Heart Show”). The lyrics are smart and this ablum’s addi­tion of song­writer A.C. New­man’s niece Kathryn Calder on vocals (and piano) add even more lay­ers of nice to a great album. If you like vari­ety in your rock and want some­thing new and sol­id, you should have this album in your col­lec­tion.

  1. We love the con­vience of iTMS, but of course the DRM is a bit frus­trat­ing. I typ­i­cal­ly burn and re-rip the music bought there for two rea­sons: 1) a phys­i­cal back-up in the event of hard-dri­ve fail­ure and 2)Re-ripping removes the DRM on the music. []

5 thoughts on ““Twin Cinema” — The New Pornographers”

  1. I’ve been want­i­ng this album since it came out. I got their pre­vi­ous album main­ly because I’m a fan of neko case, but I loved it because they have such crazy ener­gy. Hope this one’s bet­ter.

  2. So, is it Case that sings on a lot of the songs that I thought might have been Calder? Either way, the piano is very cool on this album. Espe­cial­ly the main grooves on “The Bones of an Idol” and “These Are The Fables.” That sec­ond tune is a per­fect exam­ple of how 30-sec­onds just can’t begin to cap­ture how cool the whole song is.

    I real­ly don’t think you’ll be let down on this album.

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