Eels
Wonderful, Glorious


4.0
excellent

Review

by Alex Beebe USER (126 Reviews)
February 10th, 2013 | 36 replies


Release Date: 02/05/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: There finally seems to be some sunshine in E’s life.

Founding and only permanent Eels member Mark Everett – best known by his stage name E – has an interesting method of writing lyrics for Eels albums. For the past 18 years, Eels has functioned as his outlet for venting any personal crisis he may encounter, but what makes E different from other tormented singer-songwriters is that he prefers to treat each Eels album as a new entry into a personal journal, documenting and charting the progression of his current emotional state in the present rather than dwelling on the past for inspiration. Having concluded his anguished trilogy of concept albums about lost love and lust in 2010, Eels’ tenth album Wonderful, Glorious gives the impression that things just might be looking up for E at this point in his life.

At its core themes, the subject matter of Wonderful, Glorious doesn’t differ too much from other Eels albums despite it being lighter than the heavy intent on End Times. He’s still singing about coming out of his shell, but this time he actually sounds confident and determined on taking action as opposed to just frustrated. It’s really all in E’s delivery, as there isn’t anything exactly like the sorrowful indie rock brooding sessions of Tomorrow Morning to be found on Wonderful, Glorious. He actually sounds in high spirits, upbeat, and even perky. It’s as if he’s taking some real enjoyment in jamming the music that supports his passages, and having fun involving his band of rotating members into the composing process more than ever before.

While there could be more variation in the lyrical themes, the musical textures on Wonderful, Glorious vary marvelously throughout the tracks. It’s typical for an Eels album to focus on E more than the music, but here, just as much attention is given to the continually surprising and creative explorations that take place on Wonderful, Glorious. This time around, E has kept Koool G Murder on bass guitar and Knuckles on drums just as it was on Tomorrow Morning, and he has brought in both The Chet and P-Boo for a double guitar backed force that helps Eels churn out rugged jams that produce a hard-edged rock sound that’s uncommon for indie rock.

“Bombs Away” and “Kinda Fuzzy” delve into scratchy and fuzzy wails of guitar distortion that sound jazzy being paired with petite electronic shims. “New Alphabet” is just downright noisy blues, “Peach Blossom” would make The Black Keys blush, and songs like “True Original” and “The Turnaround” outright abandon these tones and go for the more blissful and atmospheric ballad like approach.

Its tonal shifts aren’t too consistent, and its lyrical and musical themes could be more cohesive as a whole, but Wonderful, Glorious shows a brighter and more positive-thinking change in direction for Eels overall. For the sake of E's mental well-being and emotional condition, that’s a change that should be encouraged and supported further.



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user ratings (43)
Chart.
3.4
great
other reviews of this album
Joseph Viney STAFF (3.8)
Turn that frown upside down...

Ali CONTRIBUTOR (3.5)
"Y'know what? I'm in a good mood today..."...


Comments:Add a Comment 
breakingthefragile
February 10th 2013


2961 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Electric stuff. Eh? Eh? Get it?

ABjordanMM
February 10th 2013


1431 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Just picked this up today. Thought I might not like it as much cause of hearing about the more positive attitude but I actually am really enjoying it. Great review by the way.

Digging: Ben Howard - I Forget Where We Were

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2013


50561 Comments


Eels up inside ya, findin an entrance where they can

ABjordanMM
February 10th 2013


1431 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Also I don't find it as happy as most are saying I guess. There's still some dark themes.

Funeralopolis
February 10th 2013


11571 Comments


wait can you not pos or neg contributors anymore?

Digging: Black Milk - If There's a Hell Below

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2013


19926 Comments


nope you can't

Digging: Transit - Joyride

breakingthefragile
February 10th 2013


2961 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@ABjordanMM Thanks man. And yeah, don't get me wrong, it's not all bunnies and rainbows, but the mood isn't as dense and abrasive as it usually is with Eels albums.

@Funeralopolis Yeah, the pos and neg options have been removed for contributor reviews. Took our precious approval ratings too.

ABjordanMM
February 10th 2013


1431 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

feature!

ExcentrifugalForz
February 10th 2013


1756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Im glad somebody reviewed this album which has been a pleasant surprise.

blastOFFitsPARTYtime
February 10th 2013


1477 Comments


Sweet, dude. Will get on this - love me some Eels.

MrElmo
February 10th 2013


1955 Comments


eels up inside ya? EELS

MichaelSnoxall
February 10th 2013


12163 Comments


Eels up inside ya, findin an entrance where they can [[2]

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2013


22013 Comments


2 features on the main page? Surprised Ali's wasn't chosen instead tbh

No offence to you, of course

Digging: Freddie Gibbs and Madlib - Pinata

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2013


19926 Comments


Damn you're on fire Alex

skoopy48
February 10th 2013


1536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

E has apparently decided that maybe it's time to live happy

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
February 10th 2013


10286 Comments


Alex, didn't Ali request this album?

Gyromania
February 10th 2013


15941 Comments


^ i thought he did as well. good review though.

Digging: Lantlos - .neon

ConsiderPhlebas
February 10th 2013


6157 Comments


Sweet review. Wish I liked this more.

breakingthefragile
February 10th 2013


2961 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Omaha I must not have been paying attention when he requested it, my bad.

Athom
Staff Reviewer
February 10th 2013


17222 Comments


tomorrow morning was pretty cheery too




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