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The National - Words and Music - 2013

by Russ Borris

The National has steadily held our attention ever since their 2001 self-titled debut. Over the years, the band has developed a uniquely somber yet lush style. The musical arrangements ebb and flow like tides and often have an eerie and tense feel to them — as though you may get pulled into an undertow. But there are also moments of serenity and joy in their sound. It is not lighthearted, easy-listening pop; it's rousing and dramatic music with poetically dark and evocative lyrics.

The music is created by two sets of brothers — The Devendorfs and The Dessners — with Scott and Bryan Devendorf on bass and drums respectively, and twins Aaron and Bryce Dessner who both play guitar. And the deep baritone voice of the band belongs to Matt Berninger, who writes the lyrics.

Today marks the release of the band's sixth full-length album, Trouble Will Find Me. We'll air this session tonight at 9 here on WFUV, and be sure to check out the amazing videos of The National performing some of the new material from The Cutting Room Studios here in New York City.

[recorded: 05/09/13]

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