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The Silver Gymnasium
 
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The Silver Gymnasium

30 Sept. 2013 | Format: MP3

£7.49 (VAT included if applicable)
Buy the CD album for £9.99 and get the MP3 version for FREE. Does not apply to gift orders.
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Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
4:26
30
2
3:04
30
3
6:32
30
4
3:39
30
5
5:31
30
6
3:47
30
7
3:06
30
8
4:19
30
9
5:00
30
10
4:37
30
11
4:58
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 30 Sept. 2013
  • Release Date: 30 Sept. 2013
  • Label: ATO Records
  • Copyright: 2013 ATO Records, LLC under exclusive licence to [PIAS] Cooperative
  • Total Length: 48:59
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B00FFMXQJA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,316 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Red on Black TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Sept. 2013
Format: Audio CD
Should Okkervil River implode tomorrow in sudden break up or be abducted by aliens they will have left us with a one outright work of genius (2003's "Down the river of golden dreams") and a range of other albums which were often brilliant and never ordinary ("The Black Sheep" being the best example). At the core of the consistency displayed by this Austin band over seven albums has been the songs of Will Scheff who has the distinction of being both one of rock's best lyricists and tenors. With the able support of a fine set of musicians, Scheff uses this new album "The Silver Gymnasium" to develop a lyrical theme exploring his own past essentially detailing with the people and places he knew while growing up in Meriden, New Hampshire in the 1980s. It leads to an album which is undoubtedly the least experimental of the bands work thus far. Musical and lyrical complexity has been part of this bands charm but this new album is probably the most accessible they have recorded since 2007s "The Stage Names". The good news is that it is genuinely solid and often beautiful album happily enchanted by the presence of Shearwater's unmistakable Jonathan Meiburg lending his backing vocals to five songs.

The source material provides Scheff with a strong conceptual hook to hang this album upon. Songs like the opening jaunty piano ballad "It was my season" have a singalong quality to them and a hint of Robert Smith. But like all Okkervil River songs they are infused with emotion and a capacity for incorporating multiple musical influences into a five minute window. This is even more pronounced on the smart lyrical word play on one of the albums standout tracks the six minute plus "Down, down in the deep river".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tommy Dooley TOP 100 REVIEWER on 8 Dec. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I got this the day it came out but have waited til now to write a review as I wasn't sure about it at first and that is often a very good thing. As this is one of those albums that is a real grower, until one day all the pieces fall into place and you spend the next fortnight finding as much time as possible to listen to it.

This is Will Sheff making a return to his youth back in the 1980's in hometown Meriden, NH. These are songs about growing up and a small world with the promise of so much more, best friends forever and summers remembered with rose tinted glasses. Jonathan Meiburg (Sheerwater) makes a much welcomed contribution with banjo, harmony and vocals and we have a harpsichord played by the uber talented Justin Sherburn. But the real talent is as always Will Sheff and his soaring vocals and imagery of lyrics that are closer to poetry than a `pop tune'.

There are so many stand out tracks here `Lido Pier Suicide Car' is excellent and check out the versions on YouTube. `Stay Young' is an homage to the music of the eighties complete with fuzzy synth and if you try dancing to it, it only works if you do it eighties stylie, so large shoulder pads and rubbish bouffant may actually help. `Down the deep river' is almost anthemic, especially in length but it could go on all day as far as I am concerned, mind you then it would probably be `prog rock'.

The opening number `It was my season' is one of those that yearns for the golden days and all that was promised and is just brilliant. There are so many instruments on this album and it all works including trumpet, lap steel and harmonica. The only track that seems out of place is `Walking without Frankie' which is a bit slow and brooding and brings the pace down a tad.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brian Hamilton TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 12 Dec. 2014
Format: Audio CD
The liner notes of the Silver Gymnasium give a flavour of what to expect - a breathless narration, fragmentary memory of a night time car-ride to hospital. So it is with the songs that we are treated to an utter feast of introspective Americana in the finest tradition.

So often albums like this hang on a knife edge, they can easily trip into the navel-gazing whimsy but the Silver Gymnasium never does. You get the feeling that this act are enthralled and somewhat overwhelmed by the mythic shape that America has assumed and they make good efforts in describing the feelings a typical person from small town America feels.

It really doesn't hurt that they can craft a decent tune that hooks into your head and doesn't let go.

So, we veer from up tempo numbers to slow low key narratives, think the lyrics of Beck but slightly less weird with more of a narrative thread. The odd 80's tinged keyboard motif adds a little surprise every now and then.

This is really an outstanding album, a grower with no filler. The songs are strong and individual, the lyrics are meaningful rather than shoehorned in to sit awkwardly.

An absolute diamond of a record and one I keep going back to.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By S. P. Leonard on 4 Dec. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
A great new album from this under rated band, one of my 2014 favourite albums, I absolutely love it - enjoy
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