The Twilight Sad
Nobody Wants To Be Here And Nobody Wants To Leave


4.5
superb

Review

by AliW1993 USER (134 Reviews)
October 26th, 2014 | 130 replies


Release Date: 10/27/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Don't you dare say no...

A decade into their distinguished innings, it's abundantly clear The Twilight Sad aren't about to make the same album twice. Whether they're dealing stirring autumnal warmth, harsh wintry turbulence or menacing icy gloom, the Kilsyth trio have made it their hallmark to approach each record from a fresh sonic perspective, all while retaining the dense, cathartic and distinctly Scottish din they've mastered since day one. This novel yet familiar method has afforded fans a valuable security blanket to bolster their anticipation, and given the group's penchant for fall themes it seems this fourth instalment couldn't be arriving at a more appropriate time.

Perhaps the first query which springs to mind regarding Nobody Wants to Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave is whether it's been affected by months spent touring the divine Fourteen Autumns and Fifteen Winters in its entirety. With no meaningful anniversary to speak of, the decision to return to their debut certainly appeared a significant one, yet aside from its characteristic wordy titles the answer would appear to be very little.

Instead, the record's true influence has been relayed by singer James Graham, whose interviews have depicted both a concoction of past material and a culmination of everything positive his band have come to represent. It's not as radical a leap as that taken on predecessor No One Can Ever Know, but in marrying this elemental goldmine they've once more crafted a piece whose sound stands apart; a profound slow-burning marvel whose subtlety of touch can almost be likened to acclaimed names such as The National, without ever bearing material resemblance.

This advance is felt most profoundly in Graham and guitarist Andy MacFarlane's songwriting. This might sound curious considering the outstanding moments scattered across existing LPs, but this is the first time the pair's creative partnership has yielded fruits consistently and invariably as gripping as their overriding aesthetic. The result, then, is a record that's by some way their most accomplished to date, rife with both with diversity and sure-fire fan favourites. 'There's a Girl in the Corner,' for instance, opens proceedings with a clear link to No One Can Ever Know, its mid-paced simmer reprising not only the synths but also the eerie, unsettled atmosphere which perpetuated its forbearer. By the time the dynamic, shape-shifting anthem' I Could Give You All That You Don't Want' has entered the fray, however, the transition already seems markedly less straightforward; a feeling underlined in bold by the scorching epic 'In Nowheres,' where MacFarlane's guitar-driven hurricane returns with a vengeance.

Then, of course, there's Graham's vocal; that magnificent rhotic brogue the group's music is increasingly being constructed around. Assured and assertive, his performance at times resembles that of a man possessed, with tasteful dabs of echo, layering and distortion only magnifying his emotive Celtic punch. Nowhere is this better exhibited than on closer 'I Wished I Could Fall Asleep,' which sets his naked voice alone save for a stark piano backdrop. The arrangement is startling in itself, but even more surprising are his lyrics, which abandon the usual abstract approach for a spate of withering, crystal clear self-examination.

In a similarly candid confession, the singer recently lifted the lid on fears concerning the band's future, claiming that until recently he "genuinely thought nobody gave a *** anymore." It's ironic, then, that these fears have essentially been vanquished by a trip down memory lane, with the Fourteen Autumns shows and the reaction to them not only proving that statement to be categorically false, but also inspiring the group to craft a record on a comparable level. They may never escape their 'cult' tag, nor their lazily forged rep as serial miserablists, but after the most minor of blips Nobody Wants to Be Here is a record which once more sets their trajectory skywards.



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user ratings (184)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
AliW1993
October 26th 2014


7511 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album streams:



UK: http://drownedinsound.com/news/4148395-album-stream--twilight-sads-10-10-awarded-masterpiece-nobody



Elsewhere: http://www.stereogum.com/1713821/stream-the-twilight-sad-nobody-wants-to-be-here-and-nobody-wants-to-leave-stereogum-premiere/mp3s/album-stream/



Highly, highly recommended. This was my most anticipated record all year and it's only exceeded expectations.

Ryus
October 26th 2014


16987 Comments


ooh should listen, sounds like something i'd dig

henryChinaski
October 26th 2014


4137 Comments


I kinda forgot about these guys. Used to jam their first record. Will check this out!

Digging: James Blake - Assume Form

Vader
October 26th 2014


81 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Just heard "There's A Girl in the Corner" and thought it was beautiful stuff. The subtle electronics pushing it along for most of the song are lovely. Hope I enjoy the rest as much.

Vader
October 26th 2014


81 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Listening to the album now and finding it has an almost icy atmosphere about it that I really like. Wasn't expecting this to be so reliant on atmosphere but it works very well. Their darker stuff is the just the best.

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Emeritus
October 26th 2014


6681 Comments


never really jammed these guys.

your concluding paragraph is great. one of the best I've read in a long time (rest of review is great too ofc) tbh I'd whittle down the
first 3 paragraphs but w/e, they're written excellently

TheWrenKing
October 26th 2014


1696 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Love this band. They consistently amaze me. This is probably my album of the year so far.

Digging: Secret Mommy - Plays

TwigTW
October 26th 2014


3630 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

". . . it's only exceeded expectations."



I was hoping it would be this good, but wasn't really expecting it--so yes!

ExplosiveOranges
October 26th 2014


4408 Comments


OMG ALI REVIEW

Oh yeah, and the band looks kinda good.

AliW1993
October 26th 2014


7511 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ Vader Obviously there's a really strong atmosphere going on, but I'd say this record is less reliant on it than any of its predecessors, mainly due to the improvement in their writing. Having said that, if you like the 'icy' vibe I'd recommend their last record, No One Can Ever Know if you've not heard it already.



@ Tristan Thanks. I ended up writing more than I'd originally planned, but I don't really see any need to change it.





AliW1993
October 26th 2014


7511 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ ExplosiveOranges Nothing drags me out my hole like a sumptuous slice of Scottish gloom.



Seriously though, they're right up there with my favourite groups currently doing the rounds. Their live shows are absolutely phenomenal.

NorwichScene
October 26th 2014


2791 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nice review Ali. Will have a listen on my way to work tomorrow

Wadlez
October 26th 2014


4917 Comments


Just checked their debut earlier today. Me likey.

AliW1993
October 27th 2014


7511 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ah, I assumed that was for everywhere outside the US. It's out today, so I'm sure you'll be able to track it down.

Ponton
Emeritus
October 27th 2014


6460 Comments


Sweet

Digging: Cursive - The Ugly Organ

TwigTW
October 27th 2014


3630 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

If you count Live at Paisley Abbey (and I do), this is the second outstanding album they've released this year.

Pheromone
October 27th 2014


6719 Comments


The opener is perfect. Need to check this out, I adore the band.

Digging: Bad Brains - Bad Brains

Pheromone
October 27th 2014


6719 Comments


Love the cover too

vineh
October 27th 2014


1 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I love Twilight Sad but I do think this is their worst album,though, the first 4 tracks are just perfect.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
October 27th 2014


8191 Comments


Listening the album opener and it sounds awesome, love the vocals and the atmosphere.

The Scottish accent of the singer is heavy :-)

Digging: Sordide - Hier Déjà Mort



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