Lisbon (Fat Possum)
Reviewed by Austin Powell, Fri., Sept. 10, 2010
The WalkmenLisbon (Fat Possum)
No one captures a drunken stupor better than the Walkmen. Reportedly inspired by two rainy trips to the Portugese capital, Lisbon nevertheless sounds like a continuation of the NYC outfit's 2008 turning point, You & Me, a dramatic din of last-call waltzes and dimly lit remembrances. That's especially true of opener "Juveniles," in which Hamilton Leithauser concludes, "You're one of us or one of them," and "Blue as Your Blood," whose wall of sound offsets the singer's raspy ache. Lisbon is both the Walkmen's most lonesome and immediate work. The visceral "Angela Surf City" offers a blood rush unmatched since "The Rat," propelled by the jazzy inflections of drummer Matt Barrick. "Torch Song" could pass for Beach Boys redux, and "Stranded" serves Ol' Blue Eyes on the rocks. As the churning "Victory" aptly demonstrates, this is a triumph of the ordinary.