"Sleep Well Beast"; A Review Of The National's Seventh Effort

"Sleep Well Beast"; A Review Of The National's Seventh Effort

More of the same from The National.
87
views

The National's "Sleep Well Beast", their seventh album and four years after 2013's "Trouble Will Find Me" is melancholic and dark just as all their previous efforts. Ditching the post-punk revival sound for a more indie rock tone, for better or for worse, The National furthermore create a more poppy and hook driven album with their latest effort.

The production is clean and dense, with poetic lyrics and intense instrumentation. Overall, The National is simply doing what they've been doing for years now, which is something they're very solid at by now. Compared to "Trouble Will Find Me", however, "Sleep Well Beast" has sharper lyricism and instrumentation, to make it an overall more enjoyable listen.

At times, however, this cannot save the album from still feeling too similar throughout its length, as they are technically just doing the same as they did with albums like "The Boxer" and "High Violet", just more unimaginative because of how long they've been trying for the same sound. Though it is still solid altogether, it seems at times like The National has run out of ideas.

The vocal melodies could be better, as the singing is rather uninteresting all too often, seeming like Berninger is mumbling more than singing. Only in songs like "Turtleneck" and "Day I Die" does the music and vocals get more energy, as The National finally realizes that they're a rock and punk based band again.

The sound The National is going for has already been beaten dead by artists such as Nick Cave, Interpol, and, ironically enough, themselves. They stood out from the crowd of boring dark post-punk indie rock at first with albums like "Alligator" and "The Boxer", but there's only so long they can keep creating the same sound before it gets boring and all sounds the same.

The hooks make up for this to a point, keeping the album interesting enough so that it doesn't drone on too much. Moments in songs such as "The System Only Dreams in Total Darkness" call back to the most interesting days of the band, showing that maybe The National still has it in them to create something incredible in the future, just not now.

For now, however, it just seems as if The National, especially Berninger, are too old to being doing this at this point. There's only so much middle aged crisis and melancholia one can take before it gets too cheesy and melodramatic, and you can't stand to listen to it anymore. Sometimes, a thoroughly mediocre album is worse than a bad one. This might be one of those cases.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram

Popular Right Now

50 Quotes from the Best Vines

If you're picturing the vines in your head, you're doing it right
483912
views

In 2017 we had to say goodbye to one of the best websites to ever roam the internet: Vine. In case you have been living under a rock since 2013, Vine was -(sad face)- a website and app that took the internet and the app store by storm in Winter 2013. It contained 6-second videos that were mostly comedy- but there were other genres including music, sports, cool tricks and different trends. Vine stars would get together and plan out a vine and film it till they got it right.

It was owned by Twitter and it was shut down because of so many reasons; the viners were leaving and making money from Youtube, there was simply no money in it and Twitter wanted us to suffer.

There's been a ton of threads on Twitter of everyone's favorite vines so I thought I'd jump in and share some of my favorites. So without further ado, here are some quotes of vines that most vine fanatics would know.

1. "AHH...Stahhp. I coulda dropped mah croissant"

2. "Nate how are those chicken strips?" "F%#K YA CHICKEN STRIPS.....F%#K ya chicken strips!"

3. "Road work ahead? Uh Yea, I sure hope it does"

4. "Happy Crimus...." "It's crismun..." "Merry crisis" "Merry chrysler"

5. "...Hi Welcome to Chili's"

6. "HoW dO yOu kNoW wHaT's gOoD fOr mE?" "THAT'S MY OPINIONNN!!!.."

7."Welcome to Bible Study. We're all children of Jesus... Kumbaya my looordd"

8. Hi my name's Trey, I have a basketball game tomorrow. Well I'm a point guard, I got shoe game..."

9. "It's a avocadooo...thanks"

10. "Yo how much money do you have?" "69 cents" "AYE you know what that means?" "I don't have enough money for chicken nuggets"

11. "Hurricane Katrina? More like Hurricane Tortilla."

12. "Hey Tara you want some?" "This b*%th empty. YEET!"

13. "Get to Del Taco. They got a new thing called Freesha-- Free-- Freeshavaca do"

14. "Mothertrucker dude that hurt like a buttcheek on a stick"

15. "Two brooss chillin in a hot tub 5 feet apart cuz they're not gay"

16. "Jared can you read number 23 for the class?" "No I cannot.... What up I'm Jared, I'm 19 and I never f#@%in learned how to read."

17. "Not to be racist or anything but Asian people SSUUGHHH"

18. 18. "I wanna be a cowboy baby... I wanna be a cowboy baby"

19. "Hey, I'm lesbian" "I thought you were American"

20. "I spilled lipstick in your Valentino bag" "you spilled- whaghwhha- lipstick in my Valentino White bag?"

21. "What's better than this? Guys bein dudes"

22. "How'd you get these bumps? ya got eggzma?" "I got what?" "You got eggzma?"

23. "WHAT ARE THOSEEEEE?" "THEY are my crocs!"

24. "Can I get a waffle? Can I please get a waffle?"

25. "HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAVEN!" "I can't sweem"

26. "Say Coloradoo" "I'M A GIRAFFE!!"

27. "How much did you pay for that taco?" Aight yo you know this boys got his free tacoo"

28. *Birds chirping* "Tweekle Tweekle"

29. "Girl, you're thicker than a bowl of oatmeal"

30. "I brought you Frankincense" "Thank you" "I brought you Myrrh" "Thank you" "Mur-dur" "huh...Judas..no"

31. "Sleep? I don't know about sleep...it's summertime" "You ain't go to bed?" "Oh she caught me"

32. "All I wanna tell you is school's not important... Be whatever you wanna be. If you wanna be a dog...RUFF. You know?"33. "Oh I like ya accent where you from?" "I'm Liberian" "Oh, my bad *whispering* I like your accent..."

34. "Next Please" "Hello" "Sir, this is a mug shot" "A mug shot? I don't even drink coffee"


35. "Hey did you happen to go to class last week?" "I have never missed a class"

36. "Go ahead and introduce yourselves" "My name is Michael with a B and I've been afraid of insects my entire-" "Stop, stop, stop. Where?" "Hmm?" "Where's the B?" "There's a bee?"

37. "There's only one thing worse than a rapist...Boom" "A child" "No"

38. "Later mom. What's up me and my boys are going to see Uncle Kracker...GIVE ME MY HAT BACK JORDAN! DO YOU WANNA SEE UNCLE KRACKER OR NO?


39. "Dad look, it's the good kush." This is the dollar store, how good can it be?"

40. "Zach stop...Zach stop...You're gonna get in trouble. Zach"

41. "CHRIS! Is that a weed? "No this is a crayon-" I'm calling the police" *puts 911 into microwave* "911 what's your emergency"

42. "WHY? WHY? WHY? WHY? WHY? "

43. *Blowing vape on table* * cameraman blows it away* "ADAM"

44. "Would you like the spider in your hand?" "Yea" "Say please" "Please" *puts spider in hand* *screams*

45. "Oh hi, thanks for checking in I'm still a piece of garrbaagge"

46. *girl blows vape* "...WoW"

47. *running* "...Daddy?" "Do I look like-?"

48. *Pours water onto girl's face" "Hello?"

49. "Wait oh yes wait a minute Mr. Postman" "HaaaAHH"

50. "...And they were roommates" "Mah God they were roommates"


I could literally go on forever because I just reference vines on a daily basis. Rest in peace Vine

Cover Image Credit: Vine

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

'Deadpool 2' Review: Does This Sequel Give Maximum Effort?

The rude and crude Deadpool has returned, and this time he's "assembled" a crew; no not that one.
33
views

The film "Deadpool 2" is a bit of an odd duck to write about. The character Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) is known for his unique brand of raunchy, gory, humor that includes constant "breaking the fourth wall" jokes as well as in-your-face meta-humor. While I find this kind of humor entertaining (it's kind of clever and cheeky, which is my kind of humor), I can see how others could find it very grating (comedy is subjective, after all).

This makes the comedy part of the film very hard to review, but I'm going to do my best to explain how the humor has changed/not changed since the first film.

The film starts with the titular character Wade Wilson/Deadpool going around the world, contract killing as many bad guys in as many ludicrous ways as possible. Things take a turn for the worse, however, when a personal loss sends Deadpool into a deep depression (to the point where he tries to commit suicide, but is unable to die, of course).

Things go further sideways when he runs into a mutant boy Russell Collins/Firefist (Julian Dennison) who's attempting to run away from an orphanage that's run by a religious zealot using machines and prayer to "convert" mutants back to humans. Both end up being hunted by a grizzled cyborg from the future named Cable (Josh Brolin), who wants to kill Russell for a crime he commits in the future.

This causes Deadpool to create his own team called the X-Forces, which includes a lucky mercenary named Domino (Zazie Beetz) and Peter (Rob Delaney) who's just a "regular Joe" who answered the ad.

To say any more would give away many of the best jokes and guest appearances. Surprisingly, the film deals with heavy themes including redemption after failing to save a life, how solving your problems through violence can negatively affect others around you (which is very ironic for this series and doesn't quite work because of it) and the condemnation of people who use abuse to try to change those who are different (the X-Men series is usually used as an analogy for minorities who struggle in society and the orphanage is clearly an analogy for "conversion camps.")

However, these elements stay, mostly, under the surface and only come up to influence a certain character's actions and worldview. The main focus of the film is it's humor and here's where things get a little odd (which shouldn't be a surprise for this series). All of the jokes are still at that same level of wacky, raunchy, meta-gags that made you either love/hate the original. However, there are two things I picked up on while watching the jokes.

First, many of the jokes this time around involve various comic book references and references to the quality of previous "X-Men" films. There is a great joke in the film about how a certain comic book artist is famously bad at drawing human anatomy.

However, I was one of the few who got that joke due to my knowledge of the artist and the various critiques of his work, Those who don't understand what that's referencing probably won't laugh. There are some great jokes for all members of the audience, but I couldn't help but notice that there were a lot more jokes that only large comic fans, like myself, would get so I thought it would be best to warn you.

Second, while the jokes in this film aren't the exact same ones they make in the first film (with a few key exceptions), they are making fun of the exact same things that were in the first one. I was like, "they had a checklist of things they had to make fun of in the first film but didn't exactly update it for the second one. Make a joke about Deadpool losing a body part and having it grow back really small; check. Make a joke about films like "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" and "Green Lantern" being terrible movies; check.

A montage of Deadpool killing people in hilarious ways; check. A joke about there only being two X-Men present at the X Mansion at any given time; check." While these jokes are still different enough and funny enough to not bother me, I was getting a sense of deja vu and wished they would find something more original to joke about.

Everyone in the cast does a great job bringing their characters to life, with the obvious standouts being Ryan Reynolds and Josh Brolin (Wow, Brolin has had a good month this month). Reynold's sarcastic and witty charisma prove, once again, that he was born to play Deadpool. Brolin plays Cable as the cliche, grim and gritty humorless tough guy with a tragic past which makes him a perfect character for Deadpool to comedically bounce off of.

While this film isn't as original as... the original, it still had some memorable gags and clever one-liners that kept me laughing as I recalled them in the car ride home. This film is a rare sequel that I consider neither better nor worse than the original, they both occupy the exact same level of quality in my mind. However, that's just me and as I've said before comedy is extremely subjective. I hope you use what I've written in this review to inform your decision as to whether or not to see this film. It's a flawed film, but one that I personally had a blast watching.

Score: 8.5 out of 10

Chimichangas!

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

Related Content

Facebook Comments