REVIEW: The Walkmen – “Heaven”

[May 29th 2012 – Fat Possum Records // Find it at: iTunes | Insound]


Even in its most tender, lovesick heart-dusting moments, Heaven unravels in your arms to show it’s mature. Compared to the rest of the east coast band’s 2000s’-riddled career, it might be The Walkmen’s most sincere effort. From the sting of the twanging guitars to the constant quiver of percussion to even Hamilton Leithauser’s desperate wails that pierce with realism, the group’s seventh batch of recordings never lose life. And it’s all contributed to growth. Instead of rumbling through hard rock bangers, The Walkmen give you shots of retro bliss (“Heartbreaker”, “The Love You Love”) coated in soaking wet, seductive production. It, along with a cohesive pulse, is what adds the lustful tips to the rhythms in “Love Is Luck” and convinces “Dreamboat” to be inexplicably poignant. More lighter numbers try to fit it into the makeup, but they don’t escalate like Leithauser’s emotional cries. From song to song, his narratives about erasable affection and letting love distinguish doubt power Heaven’s compelling script of instrumentals. It’s cuts like “The Witch” where it seems in the midst of gritty doo-wop, Leithhauser is almost helpless, trying to hold on to his heart as the valves are snipped one-by-one. It’s not pretty but it adds to the texture The Walkmen have developed – a shedding of rock n’ roll that twists every sentiment nesting inside of you and rings it out until every last drop of youthful lust hits the floor.

Download: “Heartbreaker”, “The Witch”, “The Love You Love”

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