"The detachment you can feel throughout our younger records is gone. We felt like it was time to make a bigger, more generous statement." When describing the new album, Heaven (produced by Phil Ek - Fleet Foxes, Band of Horses, Built to Spill etc.), the Walkmen lead singer Hamilton Leithauser portrays a band hitting maturity, comfortable in its mastery, after a decade together. Adds guitarist Paul Maroon, "when you're starting out, you're sitting there trying to come up with a big idea, but after a while, you learn about the process of writing. You learn about your friends in the band and how they work best."
It's been ten years since the Walkmen made their debut album, Everybody Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone. Ten years since they mixed the lovingly recorded analogue tapes down to the cheapest CD burner they could find. Ten years since lead singer Hamilton Leithauser snapped guitarist Paul Maroon's arm in a celebratory wrestling match. Ten years since critics attached them to a New York scene they never wanted any part of.
But when Leithauser sings "We Can't Be Beat," on the opening track of their new album, he means it, like Cool Hand Luke getting up off the floor for one more round. "The world is ours," he declares. This time, he may be right.
"'Heaven,' the title track off the Walkmen's seventh album (out June 5 on Fat Possum/Bella Union), is free of the youthful detachment of the band's previous releases, harnessing their energy into a sweeping, more mature arrangement. Combining jangly guitars, throbbing two-chord bass and an engaging tambourine, 'Heaven' works under a 'less is more' theory while maintaining a certain level of arena aspirations. Frontman Hamilton Leithauser belts, 'Remember/Remember/What we fight for,' during a cinematic chorus that eventually feeds into the song's most memorable lyric: 'Don't leave me now/You're my best friend/All of my life/You've always been.' The Walkmen somehow manage to make desperation empowering on 'Heaven,' and following the group's critically acclaimed 2010 album Lisbon, its latest single boasts of a newfound paternal energy." - Maria Sherman, billboard.com
This Release Marks 10 Year Anniversary as a Band
Limited Time Free MP3 Download of Entire Album
Produced by Phil Ek (Band of Horses, Fleet Foxes, Built to Spill)
Hamilton Leithauser, vocals, guitar
Paul Maroon, guitar, piano
Walter Martin, organ, bass
Peter Bauer, organ, bass
Matt Barrick, drums
1. We Can't Be Beat
2. Love Is Luck
4. The Witch
5. Southern Heart
6. Line By Line
1. Song For Leigh
3. Jerry Jr.'s Tune
4. The Love You Love
6. No One Ever Sleeps