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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An immense album
Albums that attack you from nowhere are a rarity. A friend sent me an email with a link in it, the subject "I think you need to listen to this". The link was to The Twilight Sad's myspace page. One click was all it took, the music streaming through my tiny headphones and sending chills down my spine. With Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters they've created one of the most...
Published on 14 Jun. 2007 by Mr. Richard J. L. Hughes

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2 of 28 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Proclaimers with feedback
I almost bought this based on reviews, that goodness I checked them out on myspace first. It sounds like the Proclaimers with some dodgy backing band.
Published on 27 Oct. 2008 by I. Gillan


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An immense album, 14 Jun. 2007
This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
Albums that attack you from nowhere are a rarity. A friend sent me an email with a link in it, the subject "I think you need to listen to this". The link was to The Twilight Sad's myspace page. One click was all it took, the music streaming through my tiny headphones and sending chills down my spine. With Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters they've created one of the most accomplished debut albums you'll hear all year.

This is an album of immense lyrics that create great huge paintings of romantic poetry all set against a vicious backdrop of overdriven guitars and feedback. The band are based in Scotland and the songs are all delivered in a thick Highlands drawl that at times spit and hurl the words at you and at other times silky smooth and warming. All the songs deal with the usual perils of life and love, the heartbreak and rejection entwined with the periods of elation and happiness that can only come with finding love. There's a hint of Morrissey and The Smiths elaborate playfulness with words, the images that are conjured up similar in vain; "Why do they come when it's always raining" from Walking For Two Hours bringing to mind dark Sundays on a small coastal town. That Summer, At Home I Had Become The Invisible Boy brings to mind dark family secrets and sounding like some Ian Banks novel: "The kids are on fire in the bedroom" twisted against the oddly haunting "I'm fourteen and you know I learnt the easy way". And She Would Darken The Memory also feels as though it's dealing with some childhood trauma, "Head up dear, the rabbit might die" followed quickly by "I'm putting up with your constant whine and I won't last too long" sounds dark and sinister, all set against the backdrop of charged guitars and crashing drums, the vocals dip into dark howls and yet hit rosy highs. With all these songs the music just further augments the scenes created. The guitars delve into post-rock territory in places, the charged and overdriven chords crash and burn into periods of delicate introspection. The drums also follow a similar pattern and are able to craft whirlwinds of noise before switching to passages of quiet and gentle brushing.

This is an album which, although only nine songs in length, feels like a epic novel. The lyrics are full of imagery and an intensity that you rarely get to see or hear these days. This is further enhanced by the wall of sound created by a band that squeezes the very life out of their instruments. If you thought The Arcade Fire has this corner of anthemic and literary indie-rock covered, think again.

Richard Hughes

[...]
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A cult waiting to happen, 9 April 2009
By 
J. Jenkins (Dudley Port, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
The debut full length by the Twilight Sad is both trenchantly uncommercial and the sound of a cult band waiting to happen.

Blending a lo-fi aesthetic with walls of shoegaze guitar and more traditional instrumentation like piano and organ, the songs here eschew conventional verse/chorus/verse structure, instead achieveing their potency through building layers of noise on repeated motifs and subtly shifting lines of melody. Frontman James Graham's defiantly Scottish vocals won't be to everyone's taste either, (although bands like Idlewild and Arab Strap have proven this need not be a barrier to an audience) but they certainly help lend the songs here some of their menace.

Now, I have no wish to stereotype the Scots as an aggressive people, but the image of Graham swaggering toward you, alternately murmuring and barking lines like 'And does your fear not grow when when you see that you're all mine...with a knife in your chest,' is impossibly intimidating. When the album closes with the woozy, narcotic hum of Fourteen Autumns and Fifteen Winters, the effect is of the carthasis following an act of violence.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of 2007?, 19 April 2007
This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
An honest and hearfelt piece of work underpinned throughout by a peculiarly Scottish sensibility. Their finely honed negotiations between noise and melody are, considering the age of the players, pretty remarkable. If reference points are needed the obvious starting point is My Bloody Valentine, but in here there are also traces of early Cure, even folk music (they make effective use of an accordian). Epic in a decidedly melancholic fashion. The best record this year by far.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vibrant, exciting and about time, 12 Mar. 2008
By 
K-Pax (Bonnie Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
Not for a long time have I been as genuinely excited by a Scottish band as I have listening to 'The Twilight Sad'. There is no mistaking the Scottish accent in the vocals but this is a good thing and adds a raw and biting element to the proceedings. The voice reminds me a little of a young Midge Ure but this is as far from Ultravox as you'll get. The lyrics hit you hard e.g. "the children are on fire, in the bedroom" and while the guitar work is in your face, the melodies shine through. On my way back to Scotland from America, looking across the sky, the 1st track really hit me hard when it came on and I felt a patriotic rush of adrenaline. As a debut album, I don't think many bands could better this and the only sadness I have is that this band's talent may never be appreciated.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic, 14 Dec. 2007
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
This is a must buy if your musical tastes are a bit more adventurous than most. I first heard them live doing an acoustic hub session for Gideon Coe earlier this year and they were brilliant, especially their use of accordian to embellish their songs. As Gideon Coe said the versions they had just done were quite different from the album so I thought I need to check the album out. Well I'm glad I did, it is an absolute belter, the other reviewers have done an excellent job in describing the sound of the band (except the clown who says it sounds like Groundskeeper Willie) suffice to say buy it and play LOUD.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The twilight sad, a happy dawn, 29 Mar. 2008
This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
I really enjoyed this album - it has not been far from my CD player since I bought it on a whim - and would certainly recommend it to anyone who likes music with loud guitars or heartfelt beauty.
The tracks have a fragile loveliness, yet manage to build perfectly to powerful climaxes.
Other reviewers mention the unabashed Scottish accent and this completely adds to the charm.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 Stars & No Wonder, 31 Jan. 2009
By 
C. Skinner (Glasgow, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
The Twilight Sad's debut may be the finest debut album by a Scottish band for many a year.

It's delicate opening is a teaser only, as when the guitars kick in, it takes this album onto another level. Its like a sonic assault, with James' introspective lyrics holding their own amid the onslaught of the overdriven guitars. All the songs do follow a similar blueprint with the folk styled leaning's of the lyrics giving way to those guitars and feedback which always threaten to, but never does, drown out the songs.

It's a truly awesome album, it feels uplifting, even with the dark lyrics, and at times it's epic sound will draw you in, especially the last 2 or 3 minutes of And She Would Darken the Memory.... the instrumental section could be the soundtrack to the ending of a movie . Scotland should be proud.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Epic and Anthemic,, 1 Feb. 2012
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
From honing their skills in Glasgow's less than glamourous 13th Note venue to universal blogosphere acclaim via some well-recieved SXSW performances, in just over three years. The Twilight Sad's rise has been remarkable. Such is the buzz about this band that even if you lived in a cave on Mars, you will have heard of this Scottish quartet. With the sad demise of AC Acoustics and Arab Strap and Aerogramme's imminent departure, 'Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Summers' is the shot in the arm Scotland's music scene needs right now.

Employing the wall of sound tactics of Sigur Ros, but combining it with the energy of early Idlewild, The Twilight Sad have come across a winning formula that has seen them explode in the US. Now the rest of the world seems to be catching on too. Of course, everyone loves a Scottish accent and frontman James Graham has one of the thickest dialects yet. His vocals recall both Idlewild's Roddy Woomble and even Morrissey at times, albeit a Scottish version. However, dig a little deeper and this album provides some great moments that tend to veer into monolithic slabs of distortion heavy indie rock.

The Twilight Sad is said to be an intense live experience, but the over-driven guitar work on 'Walking For Two Hours', hints at how powerful this band's sound can be. Although most of the tracks follow the same tactic, combining white noise with soaring choruses has propelled The Twilight Sad intothe limelight. This is not the time to start deconstructing their sound. 'Talking With Fireworks/Here, It Never Soared', starts with monumental waves of discordant guitar and tumbling percussion and weaves between this segment and a more calming verse. It's like Mogwai and Arab Strap sharing a stage and fighting with one another to be heard. But then, the likes of 'Mapped By What Surrounded Them' and 'And She Would Darken The Memory' offer up insanely catchy choruses that will have you singing at the top of your voice.

Using a fairly simple quiet/loud aesthetic, The Twilight Sad have created one hell of a melodic racket in 'Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters". Building on the promise of 2006's Max Richter produced self-titled Ep, I challenge anyone not to enjoy this album. Let yourself be swayed and sing along with your best Scottish accent. Epic and anthemic, sizzling guitars and soaring melodies, this is superb stuff from these young Scots.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars my fave album of 2007, 23 Oct. 2007
By 
S. Reynolds (Britain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
this album is the work of geniuses. it has a cold, dark feeling throughout and this is what gives it a real edge. James' vocals are sublime and his accent merely adds to the party. the songs seem to reflect his life and his childhood where he grow up - but i could be wrong!!
Magnificent and i saw them live at the london metro just before xmas where they came across superbly. If you dont buy this then you are making a mistake. Oh yeah, please ignore the groundsman willie comparison - ridiculous!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant band, 22 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Audio CD)
Only just heard of twilight sad this year after seeing them at a festival. Got all of their albums after and this one in particular is stunning. Can't wait for their new one
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