The lesser known of the two LP's from Jeff Mangum's brainchild Neutral Milk Hotel. The now-famous 'In The Aeroplane Over the Sea' being the band's mega-hit album, it's easy to not know or have never delved into On Avery Island and I was the same before I picked up this great record. The feel of the music is quite different from Aeroplane, in which each song felt part of a singular, cohesive entity.
This album has a few tracks I don't care for which lessens the album for me somewhat but the tracks that are great are really great music and warrant having the record in my collection.
The Vinyl contains:
Songs Against Sex, You've Passed, Someone Is Waiting, A Baby For Free, Marching Theme, Where You'll Find Me Now, Avery Island/ April 1st, Gardenhead/ Leave Me Alone, Three Peaches, Naomi, April 8th, Pree-Sisters Swalling A Donkey's Eye, Everything Is..., Snow Song Pt. 1
There was also download code for the tracks, however at the time of posting the website is being revamped and this feature is unavailable - however Amazon allowed downloading through their Auto-rip service for those who want an eletronic copy of this album.
Favourite tracks: April 8th, Song Against Sex, Everything Is..., Gardenhead/Leave Me Alone and Where You'll Find me Now.
recived this by mail either 3 or 4 days after ordering, so damn fast. cardboard case, sporting both the merry-go-round cover, and the hand-drawn childrens dinosaur thingy cover (opens into a 3 penel case). if your afraid this album will be too diffrent from "in the aeroplane...", and won't be your cuppa tea it still contains some brass, fuzz acoustic guitar, and an "air organ" (i don't know what it it exactly either but it works well), but is a lack of "musical saw". still has the same great lyrical style that is found in the aeroplane, but the songs are less geared towards the holocaust and Anne Frank, and seems to be more about his own life. in all really pleased i got this album, and would urge anybody else to purchase it aswell.
I bought In the Aeroplane Over the Sea because I had intended to go to the ATP fest at Minehead 2011 but it was sold out. Liked the album so much I recently bought their earlier album On Avery Island. The latter has more of a Velvet Underground sound to it. Both albums are wonderful so I'm really annoyed I didn't get to see Jeff Mangum. Actually, his voice is pretty bad and I reckon the music could be bloody annoying if I was in the wrong mood. However, I love it.
I'm not the type to spend my time writing reviews, but seeing the paucity of reviews on this album, I was compelled to rave for a minute. Neutral Milk Hotel is an amazing phenomenon. Many bands do a fine job of walking the line between sounding accidentally incredible and getting lost in a sea of sound. But NMH stands alone in the ability to seamlessly integrate the full spectrum of SOUND with subtle, desperate lyrics. This album and The Aeroplane Over The Sea are both excellent. Avery Island is a bit more accessible, with more distortion and a fuller sound. Aeroplane has more acoustic guitar and a starkly real sound. If you're turned off by off-key singing, you will likely be a bit jarred at first, but don't be fooled: every slight crack in Jeff's voice is carefully placed. You owe it to yourself to give this a very serious listen: it is rare in music these days to find something so innovative but still so beautiful. Buy it if you like other Elephant6 bands (Apples In Stereo, Elf Power, Beulah, Olivia Tremor Control, etc), Modest Mouse, Pavement/Malkmus, etc. Buy it!!
I don't know how or why I bought this record by a band which in England at least remains more obscure than aether, but it truly is a magical experience. The opening track 'Song Against Sex' steals the show with oblique suicide lyrics sung to a rockabilly beat unlike anything you've heard before. The CD is worth it just for that - similar to Holland, 1945 on their following LP or Summer Babe by Pavement as music that saves. The album overall is patchy but shows flashes of genuis that marks Neutral Milk Hotel out as the possible saviours of Lo-Fi rock.