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Together Import

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 4 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Matador Records
  • ASIN: B0039ZEM0W
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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Product Description

2010 release, the fifth album from Canadian-US collective The New Pornographers, featuring Neko Case and Destroyer's Dan Bejar, in addition to bandleader and chief songwriter A.C. Newman. Playing to all the New Pornographers strengths, Together combines the freewheeling, glammy spirit of their debut Mass Romantic with the very personal, emotional songwriting of their most recent material. As a result, it's an album that aims to please, as exciting for the New Pornographers obsessive as for casual new listeners.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Living in BC, I had heard of the New Pornographers but I hadn't heard their music, however, until I heard them on Rich Terfy's CBC show. "Crash Years" is an unbelievably catchy little indie rock song and it made me curious. Then one of my friends saw them live in Edmonton and raved so I checked them out on iTunes. I downloaded the album and it has wrenched my soul. Every single song on this album is wonderous. Really. EVERY SINGLE SONG. It harkens back to the days of vinyl when you'd listen to an entire album and the context of every song, what came before and what comes after, was so important. Well, this album is fantastic from start to finish. My seven year old son rocks out to it and I hope that it shapes his consciousness in such a way that it guides him in his music choices as he grows. I have since been turned onto each New Pornographer's individual endeavours, especially Neko Case and Kathryn Calder as well as older NP albums. I love Carl Newman's and Dan Bejar's writing but the girls really make it for me. Really amazing songstresses. I love the poetics of the NP's lyrics so much. I marvel every single listen at either a certain line of words or musical inflection. Made me love music all over again.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x98299e4c) out of 5 stars 37 reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x980d59e4) out of 5 stars A Rousing Return to Form May 6 2010
By Cale E. Reneau - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Despite the fact that 2007's Challengers wound up becoming a better album as time went on, most people still viewed it as a disappointment in comparison to the near-flawless Twin Cinema. Those same people should be pleased then with the latest from A.C. Newman's group of power-poppers, Together. Eschewing Challenger's eccentricities for the more mainstream and catchy aspects of Twin Cinema, Together is more of a return to form than a reinvention. Songs like "Crash Years" and "Your Hands (Together)" come crashing down on the listener like a giant reminder of what made The New Pornographers such an endearing act to begin with. They parallel classics like "Sing Me Spanish Techno" or "Electric Version" flawlessly, and inspire such a visceral joy that repeat listens are almost guaranteed.

Neko Case regains a little bit of the spotlight that she lost on Challengers, and the result is nothing short of amazing. Her performance on "My Shephard" rivals some of her best solo work, and her vocals on "Up In the Dark" play flawlessly with Newman's, easily creating one of the best songs that the group has ever put together. Dan Bejar's songs are just as amazing. "Silver Jenny Dollar" may lack some of the lyrical charm of "Myriad Harbour," but the rest of the band makes up for that small misstep with flawless performances that keep the song interesting. "Daughter of Sorrow" is even better, but there's hardly any disguising that this is a Destroyer song dressed up in New Pornographers clothing. It has got all the grandeur of Bejar's greatest songs (think "European Oils" from Destroyer's Rubies), but completely overpowers his solo work with the help of his bandmates. I love it!

Together isn't all pomp and fanfare, however. Newman takes a few opportunities to slow things down and get emotional. "Valkyrie in the Roller Disco" is easily the most gorgeous song to release in 2010 thus far. Its subdued beauty is unparalleled by any other song the band has ever recorded (yes, even "Challengers"). When Neko and Newman sing, "Valkyrie don't go home/ It's not right/ Not right/ Leave with the lights up," it hits you in the gut and forces an emotional response. The drums and guitars are relegated to simple background duties, but Kurt Dahle absolutely nails the percussion here! When it comes in, it's just enough to heighten the song to another level. Amazing stuff, really.

A friend of mine commented on Facebook that Together is the best album the band has made since Twin Cinema. That's just a fancy way of saying that it's better than Challengers. Still, I'm compelled to agree with him on this one. Together is the New Pornographers album that all of us wanted after Twin Cinema. It is far more focused than its predecessor, presenting the listener with songs that aren't going to push any boundaries but still manage to excite. Some may be turned off by the band's insistence on sticking with the tried and true formula that has brought them such success, especially after Challengers' seemed to signal a slight change of direction. For what it's worth though, Together is a flat-out awesome album that rivals some of The New Pornographers' greatest work. Hearing it is like having an old friend write to tell you they're coming to visit. You're not entirely surprised by their arrival when they show up, but it's still nice to see them.

Key Tracks:
1. "Crash Years"
2. "Your Hands (Together)"
3. "My Shephard"
4. "Up in the Dark"
5. "Valkyrie in the Roller Disco"

9 out of 10 Stars
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x980d5a38) out of 5 stars The everything including the kitchen sink band... May 4 2010
By Paul D. Sandor - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The New Pornographers are a fantastic super-group that create rousing pop songs, low key rock songs and sing along acoustic ditties (and that's just the first three songs!) Together takes the best parts of past albums Twin Cinema (my favorite) and Challengers and meshes them together in a seamless and joyous manner. The merry men and women who make up TNP take the listener into their kooky world of lust, laughs and melody.

Their leader AC Newman is a melody maker supreme, spinning together sing along after sing along. Neko Case is arguably the best female indie/pop artist of the last five years. Her last two solo albums were on many year end top ten lists (deservedly so.) Her voice is sweeter than butterscotch. Dan Bejar is the x factor in the band taking his songs to creative and unusual places.

My favorite songs: The rousing Up in the Dark; the Belle and Sebastian-like You Can't See My Mirror; and finally the sing along closer, We End Up Together (could be this record's Bleeding Heart Show.)

If you're into indie-rock, new wave, pop, rock (hell, if you're into good music), you owe it to yourself to check out the latest from The New Pornographers. If you're already a fan, then I'm preaching to the choir... come to church and enjoy some good clean porn.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x980d5e70) out of 5 stars Makes me happy May 28 2010
By M. P. Friedman - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Woke in bad mood. Bought NP "Together" - I've been holding off for a day when I needed a lift. Now smiling. Works every time. For a few years I told people this was my favorite band. Not sure that's true anymore, but then these guys moved to a separate category long ago. Can't compare them to anyone else. New Porns and A.C.Newman's solo stuff simply make me happy. Even when my initial reaction is "not as good as..." I know most of the songs will go on a frequently played playlist. Is anything here as achingly beautiful as "Adventures in Solitude" or as kickass as "The Slow Descent" or "The Laws Have Changed" or "Twin Cinemas"? Nope. Do I care? Nope.

[update, July 21] I have had a complex relationship with this album. For a few weeks I have been telling friends it is my least favorite NP work. Then I saw them play most of the material in Oakland 3 days ago, and got a new level of understanding. Now ... is it my favorite? I dunno. Can't compare it to the earlier stuff or to anyone else in rock/pop. It's just a different and wonderful color to add to my listening palette. Listen to it LOUD!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x980d5fcc) out of 5 stars Everything Comes Together May 4 2010
By T. F. Petza - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
So this is it -- the great lost follow-up to Twin Cinema, and, in some ways, a record that may surpass it. Yes, it is that good. And while it continues to explore paths traveled down with Challengers, it does so with an energy and enthusiasm that excites. Sure, the electric keyboard buzz of the first two albums is replaced by the sawing grind of a cello, but it grinds out intricate, unique, pop perfection.
This pop goes deeper and gets under your skin. Lines like, "Damage, I'm for damage, sweet damage" and "Like the rest of us, you've got those eternity blues" stay with you and haunt the sunny melodies. And then there is just the shear fun of "Somebody took a bite out of my bed -- you" or a song crafted out of the big rig warning, "If you can't see my mirrors."
Everyone is here in full force. Dan's songs flow seamlessly with Carl's to create a satisfying whole; when not taking the lead, Neko weaves deliciously and generously in and around Bejar and Newman; Kurt Dahle's drums once again splatter from your speakers; and, perhaps the best new development, Kathryn Calder arrives as an essential and distinct force in the band, especially on "Sweet Talk."
The album builds to a rousing finale of Neko shouting "ma-ma-ma-ma" over Carl singing "we end up together." For a band whose members put out such stellar "solo" material, it's amazing the music they still create together.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x980d7330) out of 5 stars The New Pornographers Come "Together" May 13 2010
By bobby digital - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Okay, we have all accepted the fact that The New Pornographers will never top the masterpiece Twin Cinema. However, Together comes dangerously close to equalling it. Again, we have accepted that Challengers is their weakest CD even though it has its own charms and its share of classic Pornographers tracks. Now, what Together does is gives us the best of the all out blitz of Twin Cinema and expands on the new musical territory explored on Challengers. Upon listening to Together the first two times, I feel the adoration and all the reasons to love The New Pornographers, and added to it the anxiousness to hearing this new material live. Their live shows are so much fun and very entertaining especially if you have the pleasure of seeing them with the full lineup.

They hit the ground running with "Moves", "Crash Years", "Your Hands", "Silver Jenny Dollar" and "Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk." It really is a very solid and well put "together" work. Carl and Neko's harmonies have never sounded better and Danny's tracks are very good, especially "Jenny" and "If You Can't See My Mirrors". The second half of the CD enters different territories. much like Twin Cinema did without a kick ass track like "Star Bodies", but there are some real gems here like "Up in the Dark" and "A Bite Out of My Bed." All in all, definitely worth buying since it's gonna be one of the best of the year and a must own for all New Pornographers fans.