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April Pre-Orders
04/07/09 at 12:24 AM by Adrian Villagomez
I'm broke. I need money, I need a job. But that doesn't stop me from wanting to jump on three April pre-orders that caught my eye on the frontpage of AP.net. Perhaps you have some extra cash this month and one (or all) of these will be interest to you.

Butch Walker - Sycamore Meadows Vinyl Double LP + T-Shirt + MP3 - $25.00 (Chris's review)

As far as I know, I've never heard a Butch Walker song. It just hasn't happened yet. That doesn't mean I'm not interested in making Sycamore Meadows my first Butch purchase, especially after all the positive feedback I've heard about the guy. Plus, check out that sweet GN'R themed t-shirt. Very cool. If you're a digital kid, stand by for a great Amazon deal. Love Amazon. They should totally hire me.

Manchester Orchestra - Mean Everything to Nothing LP with Bonus CD - $16.99 (Jason's review)

Speaking of Amazon, here's a LP pre-order of AP.net darlings Manchester Orchestra's new album courtesy of Amazon. Here's a tip - place at least $25 of eligible Amazon.com products in your shopping cart for free "Super Saver Shipping." Manchester Orchestra are clearly talented, and they deserve your love and affection.

Kevin Devine - Brother's Blood - $7.99 (Gregory's review)

$7.99 for a new, hard copy of an album? It doesn't get much better than this. I don't own a Kevin Devine album, and this seems like a swell place to start. Not much more to add, but what a deal.

Interested in taking advantage of these deals? Support the artists and spend a bit of cash.
Tags: butch walker, kevin devine, manchester orchestra, preorder, recommendation
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We're Gonna See If This Bad Boy Can Fly
09/02/08 at 11:22 PM by Adrian Villagomez

Now that you're home won't you rescue me?
I've been trying so hard to be good again.
Now that you're home won't you rescue me?
I've been trying pretty hard to be good.

Well now that you're home I can see again,
I can see again.
Now that you're home I can see again,
God, I can see.
Tags: manchester orchestra, music video
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Album Review: Manchester Orchestra - I'm Like a Virgin Losing a Child
02/15/08 at 01:14 AM by Adrian Villagomez

Manchester Orchestra - I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child
Record Label: Canvas Back / Favorite Gentlemen
Release Date: October 14, 2006, July 24, 2007 (re-release)

The death of a father. Our inescapable mortality. The realization that even the darkest times in life can be followed by hope. Manchester Orchestra’s debut album I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child does not stray from weighted issues on singer/guitarist/songwriter Andy Hull’s chest. This album was first released in late 2006, but was re-released on July of 2007, which is when I received a copy and heard the band for the first time. I requested I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child, because I recalled Jared Kaufman having an affinity for the band, and I trusted his judgment. It’s been months since first spinning this album, and as I’ve moved my attention (“affection” may be a better word) from first song to last, I’m in with Manchester Orchestra for the long haul.

In searching for a way to describe I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child, I keep coming back to the word “heavy.” I do not mean heavy in the gravitational sense (I wouldn’t want to confuse Doc Brown), but as a fullness that’s anything but shallow. In writing songs Hull crafts characters and connects them to emotions - not the kind of theatrical fluff littering mainstream Hollywood, but the sort found in a beloved and dog-eared paperback of short stories. The album is craftily introduced by one of the more upbeat and quickly accessible songs in Manchester Orchestra’s collection, “Wolves at Night.” Keyboardist Chris Freeman sets a pop/synth rock tone for the band initially, and it is an enjoyable sound, but it’s soon discovered that both highs and lows encompass Manchester Orchestra’s full sound. “I Can Feel Your Pain” slows the pace down and finds Hull alone with a guitar, continuing the theme of Christianity found throughout the album: “I compared your Jesus to a thief / And he took my bones and he turned them into bread.”

There is beauty found in these songs for anyone seeking it. I was taken in by “Wolves at Night” and “Now That You're Home,” the first two songs found on the album, but it was “Sleeper 1972” that brought everything to a standstill. A minimalist approach to instrumentation places emphasis on what matters most in the sorrow filled narration; that is, Hull’s hushed voice and storytelling ability. There is not a word wasted in his introduction:

When my dad died
The worms ate out both his eyes
His soul flew right up in the sky
I cried myself to sleep

Hull hangs the black cloud of a funeral home over a family’s home that should be filled with joy, one in which a mother longs for her own death and a sister finds herself alone as emotions are turned inward and only serve to suffocate. This is the heaviness I was referring to earlier. Perhaps the best aspect of I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child is its ability to include varying emotions as part of separate scenes, so each song is of its own importance, but when placed alongside each other they feel stronger in their togetherness. The most recent Manchester Orchestra song to be placed on repeat on my music players has been “Alice and Interiors,” the title of which shows the band’s fondness for filmmaker Woody Allen. A desperate message to a fleeting love, Hull finds himself shouting out for one last chance and questions his own visibility, since his phone calls remain unanswered despite his attempts. After an interlude to contemplate his codependence and the futility of his efforts, Hull changes his tune, turning his frustrations outward to the one who won’t listen. He finds himself revitalized because of it:

‘Cause the truth is that no one truly knows
What the hell it is you’re doing
When they ask, “Are you dead
Or are you just sleeping?”
Oh yeah, I’m the one that is happy
I don’t like your shitty songs
You were wrong
Yeah, you’re always wrong

Months ago Manchester Orchestra were picking up steam; they were often talked about, and people were excited about the prospect of a new and talented young band. Maybe those people expected immediate gratification in the form of a new album, and by this point they’ve moved their interests elsewhere. I hope for their sake that’s not the case, because this album and this band deserve the attention of a wide and appreciative audience. I would like new music from Manchester Orchestra, but there’s no need to rush the band - I'm Like a Virgin Losing a Child could hold me over for years.

Track Listing01. Wolves at Night
02. Now That You're Home *
03. The Neighborhood is Bleeding
04. I Can Feel Your Pain *
05. Where Have You Been?
06. I Can Barely Breathe *
07. Sleeper 1972 *
08. Golden Ticket
09. Alice and Interiors *
10. Don't Let Them See You Cry
11. Colly Strings

* = definitely download

LinksAP.net Profile | Website | MySpace | Buy

Final Verdict: 90%
Tags: album review, i'm like a virgin losing a child, manchester orchestra
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I'll Always Be My Best Flaw
12/31/07 at 01:19 AM by Adrian Villagomez
Manchester Orchestra - "Alice and Interiors" (live @ North Star Bar 2007)

I swear she tried again
I'm never visible on the weekdays
When she needs me to
Do what I can’t afford to do
You better watch your tone
You’re not invincible
You know I’ll do what I got to do
To stop the sound coming from you

'Cause the truth
Is you’re probably not as bad
As I make you out to be
To the boys and the girls
That will listen closely, know
She's the one who is happy
You can write the coolest songs
I was wrong
Yeah I'm always wrong

And my God, what have we got here?
I've been dying hard
And you've been trying hard for years now
Well I swear I did it all
I'll always be my best flaw

Please just pick up the phone
Am I invincible?
You know I’ll do what I've got to do
To stop the sound coming from you

'Cause the truth
Is you’re probably not as bad
As I thought that you were being
To the boys and myself
We’re just tired of listening
I’m the one that is sorry
Help me write the coolest songs
You were wrong
Yeah you're always wrong

'Cause the truth
Is that no one truly knows
What the hell it is I'm doing
When they ask, "Are you dead
Or are you just sleeping?"
Oh yeah, you're the one who is happy
You don’t like my shitty songs
I was wrong
Yeah I'm always wrong
Tags: manchester orchestra, personal, video
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Last Updated: 11/23/14 (403,130 Views)
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