My 50 Favorite Albums of 2008: #15

Number 15

Besides having one of my absolute favorite album covers of the year, The Walkmen have finally delivered on the obvious promise they’ve shown on previous recordings with You & Me, a full-bodied collection of songs that marks a stampede in the right direction. I say stampede because the commanding sound of You & Me, which is initiated from the very beginning of the record, came as a complete surprise to me. I knew they could be capable of making a very good record, but I guess I just wasn’t expecting something as layered, fascinating, and complete as this. There is never a wrong decision made anywhere here even as I listen to it thru for what seems like the 20th time as I write this review, with the focused drive of “Postcards From Tiny Islands” serving as the soundtrack of the moment. They have certainly added a lot more to the table as far as instruments are concerned, with a number of songs overflowing with full horn and string sections, giving the album a theatrical feel while still remaining its own personal set. Lead vocalist, Hamilton Leithauser sounds pristine on each and every track, complementing what consistently is some of the most beautiful music of its kind you’re going to here all year. As with all of the very essential albums of 2008, it’s almost a sin to choose certain tracks over others as the best on You & Me, but I did it to keep the trend going. Doesn’t take anything away from the rest, I assure you. If you’re not into this album right away, be patient and let it sink in; chances are, it will sneak its way into your favorites as well.

1.Flamingos (For Colbert)
2.Donde Esta La Playa
3.On the Water
4.In the New Year
5.Seven Years of Holidays (For Stretch)
6.Postcards From Tiny Islands
7.Red Moon
8.Canadian Girl
9.Four Provinces
10.Long Time Ahead of Us
11.The Blue Route
12.New Country
13.I Lost You
14.If Only It Were True

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