The group’s latest is called I Am Very Far , and if that sounds a little remote, you don’t know the half of it. And yet it wouldn’t be an Okkervil River record if it didn’t reward repeat listens. Indie rock , Folk rock. As you might expect, the results carry a hint of mayhem: The Valley is an ungainly, occasionally discordant march, filled with fearsome visions about the music business. That said, you’re never going to get the song it drives along confused with the oeuvre of REO Speedwagon. But on its latest album, Okkervil River risks it all with a hard left into dark, unfamiliar territory.
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Others seem to announce their intentions the moment you put them on, as does the sixth album by Texan quintet Okkervil River. I Am Very Far reverses that formula: That said, you’re never going to get the song it drives along confused with the oeuvre of REO Speedwagon.
May 1, You could argue that the climate is currently good for slow-burning, bookish American indie bands looking to make a commercial leap — the Decemberists recently entered the US album charts at No 1 — but even so, Okkervil River seem improbable candidates for mainstream fame, not least because they’ve spent their last three albums wringing their hands about the very idea of mainstream fame. The Valley is an ungainly, occasionally discordant march, filled with fearsome visions about the music business.
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Elsewhere, Hanging from a Hit vegy like someone took a big lighters-aloft ballad and allowed it to unravel: On the one hand, it’s just a sound, but on the other, it’s such a legendary sonic cliche that it’s hard not to think Okkervil River vegy fronted by a sometime music journalist, nothing if not knowing about rock music — are intentionally using it as a signifier.
Black Sheep Boy, fromwas a concept album based loosely on the life of heroin-addicted folk singer Tim Hardin. From the title to the Gothic cover art to the slithery organ and gunshot snare of “The Valley,” the album — out May 10 — warns listeners upfront that they’re stepping into okkervol, unfamiliar territory. Peer through the darkness and you’ll find bright spots galore: Okkervil River, ‘I Am Very Far’ The Austin band packed its last few releases with sunny, approachable folk and country-inflected pop, ookkervil many new fans in the process.
The following people contributed to I Am Very Far: Lyrically, I Am Very Far is also a sharp departure from their previous work.
I Am Very Far – Wikipedia
The overwhelming sense is of a band trying to okkrrvil forward and simultaneously disrupt the smoothness of their own progress: Its presence would fit with advance reports that I Am Very Far is the self-styled mid-level band’s big push for Arcade Fire-style mainstream success. From this experience, Sheff attests to gaining “a kind of chaotic, powerful energy that swirls around Roky that I started to feel infecting my own writing and my own sonic ideas and desires.
Retrieved 19 July On the review aggregate site Metacriticthe album has a score of 80 out ofindicating “Generally favorable reviews.
The band’s trademark has always been the union of okksrvil elements into a beautiful mess. Views Read Edit View history. Show 25 25 50 All. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded.
Perhaps it’s another, more opaque comment on mainstream fame, by a songwriter who’s clearly fascinated by the idea, but can’t bring himself to embrace it wholeheartedly. The purchaser of I Am Very Far certainly gets a lot of apocalyptic dread and musical grandiosity for their money. What’s so engaging this time around is his willingness to take a beautiful thing and bury it.
Tiny Mix Tapeson the other hand, was less receptive to the okkercil new sound, writing “But rather than serve as a radical departure for Okkervil River, I Am Very Far treads familiar ground with a superficial extroversion that can’t match dar emotional particularity of the rest of the band’s back catalog.
First Listen: Okkervil River, ‘I Am Very Far’