The National
Boxer


5.0
classic

Review

by Adam Thomas STAFF
February 2nd, 2010 | 744 replies | 18,502 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Another uninnocent, elegant fall into the unmagnificent lives of adults

As far as I am concerned, change is the only constant. Not only does the world around us change from second to second, day to day, year to year, etc; but we change with it. We change from kids to adults. Sure, every kid bitches about his trials and tribulations while in high school, only a few years later to wish that he still had those same problems instead of a mountain of bills, a job, and an ever distancing circle of friends. The National's Boxer is a chronicle of the in between: the angst and uncertainty of those in their 20's, trying to hold on to the vibrant memories of their teenage years while coming to terms with their futures.

Boxer smolders like the final ember of a great fire, drifting alone in the wind, waiting for the chance to explode and be reborn again. Its weight lies not in the sonic presence of what is presented, but in the character and spirit of what burns beneath it. Matthew Berninger's battered and bruised baritone achingly occupies the thin red line between the intimate and the political, casting the notion that they are an interwoven force that we drift along in just like space and time, controlling every facet of who we are, and what we wish we could be. Falling in line with Berninger's poignant lyricism, the rest of the band embrace the potential of less being more. Even when stripped down to depressive piano chords and minimalistic leads, Boxer finds space for tiny orchestral flourishes, making even the most downtrodden cadences shine with resplendent glory. Firmly cementing everything together is drummer Bryan Devendorf, who beats the hell out his kit with pin-point precision. Not only do his straight forward yet devilishly intricate rhythms bring Boxer to life, but his knack for knowing when to slow things down helps further the distance in Berninger's words.

The National's Boxer is a magnificent look at the existential and social worries of a man growing in to the responsibilities and expectations of adulthood in the twenty-first century. It is carried by a crippling tension that smolders just beneath the surface, building with each unknown step, destined to tear itself apart.



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user ratings (1684)
Chart.
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
SeaAnemone
February 2nd 2010



19721 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

I love you. I love you. I love you.

Digging: Towers - Bel Air Highrise Plantation

SeaAnemone
February 2nd 2010



19721 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

this has always been one of my far-and-away favorites, but just lately it's been having this crazy effect on me- like it's my first time hearing it all over again. Album is amazing, great review.

BrandNewBoognish
February 2nd 2010



1021 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Guest Room is awesome

Kiran
Emeritus
February 2nd 2010



6000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I love you. I love you. I love you.


this. brilliant review.

thebhoy
Emeritus
February 2nd 2010



4459 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

mmmm yes Adam. Yes.

Athom
Staff Reviewer
February 2nd 2010



17196 Comments


thanks guys, I've wanted to write this for a long time.

EVedder27
February 2nd 2010



6088 Comments


Short and to the point, well done. Alligator rules so I should be giving this a spin soon.

AggravatedYeti
February 2nd 2010



7684 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

those 3 little paragraphs were brilliant

but, I dunno, this album bores the crap outta me. Love Alligator & Sad Songs tho *shrugs*

SeaAnemone
February 2nd 2010



19721 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

this is the best review I've read in a while, and not JUST because I agree whole heartedly... haha I'll be taking notes if you don't mind.

Foxhound
February 2nd 2010



4570 Comments


Pos

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
February 2nd 2010



15727 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

one of those i wish i saw what you all see albums

Digging: Joyce Manor - Never Hungover Again

Kiran
Emeritus
February 2nd 2010



6000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

shocked and appalled, yeti, shocked and appalled

Athom
Staff Reviewer
February 2nd 2010



17196 Comments



this is the best review I've read in a while, and not JUST because I agree whole heartedly... haha I'll be taking notes if you don't mind.

oh the things you do for my ego! thanks.

Knott-
Emeritus
February 2nd 2010



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

not as good as alligator but still amazing and review matches is

wish my continuum 5/5 review was flowing as well as this does

SleepyJack
February 2nd 2010



198 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Really good review. I can't stop listening to this

Rationalist
February 2nd 2010



880 Comments


This album is nowhere near a five. Period.

DiceMan
February 2nd 2010



7068 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Very cool review for a worthy album. Pos.

SleepyJack
February 2nd 2010



198 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

^^ disagree

Athom
Staff Reviewer
February 2nd 2010



17196 Comments


WHO FUCKING NEGGED! I WILL KILL YOU!

AggravatedYeti
February 2nd 2010



7684 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

shocked and appalled, yeti, shocked and appalled

: X

I saw them open for the Arcade Fire 3 years back and bought all the albums they had right then and there. Didn't like Boxer at all really, have tried to settle into it so many times now, but I just get annoyed and listen to Alligator instead.



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