Review Summary: Just wait....don't goooo
Andy Hull is no ordinary songwriter. Practically everything he was written to date has turned to gold, and has been widely praised by indie rock enthusiasts. His lyrics, while more subtle when compared to Jesse Lacey, are perfectly poetic and never lacking in inspiration. A high percentage of bands would kill for a front-man like Hull, not necessarily for the purpose of his emotive and quite excellent vocals, but rather for the factors previously mentioned. Last year’s “Mean Everything to Nothing” made a lasting impact on the underground music community with a loud and much rawer objective than its predecessor. Manchester Orchestra had delivered an accessible and blatant statement with that particular record, that unfortunately may overshadow “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” for the remainder of the band’s career. This is quite a tragic fact, for “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” follows that classic “music first, lyrics second” formula.
“I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” is a grower by trait. Hull’s heart-wrenching laments and middle fingers come as a bit of a surprise to what appears to be uplifting and innocent music. With no excess fat around the edges, the record is driven by melodic and warm guitars, and a rather simplistic song structure. With that said however, Manchester Orchestra seems to have broken their own musical boundaries with tracks such as Sleeper 1972
, which is an atmospheric and dreamy piece that is reminiscent to R.E.M.’s Star Me Kitten
. The focus though, remains on Hull’s agonized soul, a presence in which doesn’t cease to exist in any of the band’s work.
Manchester Orchestra’s debut album is essentially an assortment of emotions; it’s angry, pleading, and unwilling to be understanding all at the same time. Alice and Interiors
is the band’s f*** you to the opposite sex, at first taking blame and eventually throwing back into the face of the listener. “I'm the one that is happy. I don't like your ***ty songs. You were wrong, yeah you're always wrong.” With gem I Can Barely Breathe
, Hull is blatant as ever, for he reveals the creature that has been haunting his most inner thoughts. “If you knew I was dying would it change you?” As angry and condemning as “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” appears to be on the whole, tracks such as Now That You’re Home
are an indication that Hull and crew are indeed human and needing some sort of acceptance.
For what it’s worth, a record jam-packed with emotion; “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” is an immensely solid collection of songs that don’t cease to have an impact. The record may hit listeners at different capacities and strengths, although it would be difficult to not at least appreciate the inconceivable talent that is Andy Hull. Manchester Orchestra’s debut will not be their best effort, nor is it their greatest at the present time. “I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child” is screaming with potential, demonstrating that something classic from the band is not a figure of our imagination.
Wolves at Night
Now That You’re Home
I Can Barely Breathe
Alice and Interiors