Owen
New Leaves


4.0
excellent

Review

by Adam Thomas STAFF
September 29th, 2009 | 38 replies | 11,378 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Mike Kinsella once again puts his soul on display.

Mike Kinsella has spent the last two decades in and out of some of the underground music scene's most beloved and influential bands. In the mid 90's he was a prime mover in Cap'n Jazz, helping to add a new Midwestern swing to the burgeoning Emo genre. After the demise of Cap'n Jazz he helmed the laid back yet intriguingly technical indie outfit American Football. The last few years have found him going solo. With Owen, Mike Kinsella stripped down and refined the American Football sound into his own unique brand of biting acoustic confessionals. Interestingly enough, Kinsella's once wholly acoustic project has been slowly expanding in a fuller direction. It started with a string section here, an electric guitar fill there, and on the latest Owen release New Leaves it has blossomed into a full on cohesive expanse of lush soundscapes. Kinsella's masterful finger-picking still graces every facet of New Leaves, only this time sharing its glory with vibrant strings and twangy leads.

New Leaves marks the first Owen album to be released since Mike Kinsella's marriage and the birth of his first child and even though his life may be moving in new directions his trademark cynicism remains alive and well. Throughout New Leaves Kinsella lets us know that he is still the same emotionally strained and endearingly self-deprecating soul that we've grown to know and love. Between tales of literary romantics that “fuck like Wilde, and die like Hemingway,” and shallow acquaintances that survive on drinks and one night stands, Kinsella reflects on his new found family fortunes, portraying himself as battered bag of bones that has finally found salvation and meaning.

New Leaves closes with the bitter and nostalgic “Curtain Call”. A seemingly tired Kinsella laments “People used to pay to watch me sing and play/ but it seems more and more they come to spit in my face/ Well I'm tired of speaking up and speaking clearly so the idiots in the back can hear me” begging the question if this is the end for Kinsella's music career. Whatever the future holds, New Leaves is another gorgeous Owen album that proudly wears its heart on its sleeve.



Recent reviews by this author
United Nations The Next Four YearsMatter Teraphim
The Hotelier Home, Like NoPlace Is ThereOwls Two
Taking Back Sunday Happiness IsGridLink Longhena
user ratings (105)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Athom
Staff Reviewer
September 29th 2009



17195 Comments


I heart owen.

LisbonGirls
September 29th 2009



832 Comments


Hmmmm....blah

Athom
Staff Reviewer
September 29th 2009



17195 Comments


not hardcore enough for you?

Roach
September 29th 2009



2149 Comments


Owen is pretty good but I want American Football back.

LisbonGirls
September 29th 2009



832 Comments


Not perty enough for me

SeaAnemone
September 29th 2009



19702 Comments


Not nearly as good as American Football, this was a bit tiresome, but mostly good stuff, agree with most said points.

Digging: Towers - Bel Air Highrise Plantation

Iamthe Nightstars
September 29th 2009



2180 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's good, but I've heard two of the best songs on here as demos a while ago(Ugly on the Inside and Good Friends). Although the album version of Ugly on the Inside is very well put together.

Phantom
September 29th 2009



8930 Comments


Another great short review. Added this to my list.

charlesfishowitz
September 29th 2009



1794 Comments


will listen

good review

Ricven
September 29th 2009



207 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Everything Mike Kinsella does is awesome. This is no exception.

xNintendoCorex
October 5th 2009



1272 Comments


sooooooo gooooooood

Douglas
October 12th 2009



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Getting this nowww

AtavanHalen
October 12th 2009



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Longer review needed; but I do love Mike

xNintendoCorex
October 12th 2009



1272 Comments



Getting this nowww

that was quick!

yet another notch on my magical belt of pretentiousness

Douglas
October 12th 2009



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yet its pretty meh

EDIT: This is growing on me

charlesfishowitz
October 12th 2009



1794 Comments


its got a song on it

Douglas
October 19th 2009



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

getting better, but has some very ugh/meh parts

PietroCrespi
October 26th 2009



105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Owen's probably my favorite artist and this is his second best release, behind I Do Perceive, in my opinion.

Transient
November 1st 2009



1461 Comments


Shit, didn't even know about this. Cool.

Kyle
November 20th 2009



667 Comments


Only just got around to this but I'm really surprised at how good it is. I dunno, I guess I expected it to be a bit samey because neither Kinsella has released anything great in a while, but this is Mike on top form. Really great, lyrically.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy