Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (1998) (1 Viewer)

egg_

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What amazes me about this album over and over is it ticks none of my boxes but it's still one of the only albums I actually love

The production is appalling - the sound absolutely grates on my ears. That "I love you Jesus Christ" thing does my head in, and I'd say put about one zillion people off entirely. There's no rhythmic interest or danceablility, which is normally what I go for in music. The lyrics are vague and try to be evocative, which is nearly always a recipe for disaster

But in this case the lyrics somehow make me feel like an awestruck teenager again. The songwriting is astoundingly original without being even slightly weird, which is some feat. So. Much. Fucking. Melody. Like Sufjan Stevens, except actually good. The way "The Fool" comes in .. "the needle that sings in your heart" ... the way each line goes on and on and on ... makes my heart go PING

/me applauds everyone involved
 

GO

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Just had a big plate of sausage egg and chips and am settling down at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee for listen number 3.

Its a magnificent record.

TOP FUCKING DRAWER

I love that I havent a clue what the words are about.I don't need to worry about them just listen to the musicness of them
 

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Vote cast ..5/5

One word review ..

SUPERLATIVE

I feel very grateful to be getting to listen to this
 

Jim Daniels

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Lads! What are ye's talking about This record is fucking amazing! Easily my favourite of the four so far - say in a desert Island disc scenario.

I LOVE the production - if production means the way it's recorded and all thrown together. All those instruments, melodies and tempo changes. Fantastic!

It definitely needs a number of listens. First time I heard it, I only liked two songs - the opener and the title track, and that's 'cause they were the easiest melody-wise. But soon enough, I got it all, and couldn't listen to any track in isolation. The Jesus one took a while, but one day I found myself singing along to those lines, arms raised and then going mad for the "up and over we go" bit.

I totally get that people dismiss it as hipster beardy pretentious indie whimsy..... because it is, and that's what I love about it.

I also totally get that his voice is a brain grater. He can't really sing, but... he is a tremendous vocalist. Like the way Bob Dylan is a tremendous vocalist on Blonde On Blonde. I get emotional at some point on practically every song on the album, mainly down to the way he delivers the lines, and helped by the terrifically ambiguous lyrics - another nod to Dylan.

I like the melodic strummers and the bangers equally, but I mostly love how they are all mixed together in one long golden stream of emotion.

Finally - play it on a good stereo - it needs the speakers it deserves.
 

GO

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I look forward greatly to hearing it on the big stereo at home..I've only had it on headphones so far.
Which is no bad thing it sounds brilliant.
 

Anthony

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Ive had this on twice now. I've no problem with the voice at all.
It's a bit like an American Giant Steps by the Boo Radleys. Like a deliberate "masterpiece".
Too many instruments. There are only about 2 places all that instrumentation is justified.
More later.
 

chris d

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i've had a listen, it's fine. i don't feel like i missed out on anything by not getting in to it at the time, and now there's not a lot of point in doing so.

i'll give it another couple of gos for the club but we will probably part company after that.

In 98 (I was 16) new releases I would have been listening to would be Pulp's This is Hardcore, Gomez Bring it On and Belle & Sebastian's Boy with the Arab Strap, so this type of music would have definitely fit in my musical world at the time.

I was been getting my American lo-fi stuff through my brother's Grant Lee Buffalo tapes.

I would have been listening to a lot of the Evening Session and Mark & Lard back then. No doubt that is why a couple of these songs are familiar.
 
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Cornu Ammonis

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I haven't listened to this in a long time but my memory of it is that it's fine, some catchy bits and definitely quirky but ultimately lacking. I get why someone might like it but not how you could love it (or how those super fans can jizz themselves just thinking about it). Part of me thinks you need to hear it in your formative years, if you hear it after your teenage years then it's like reading "Catcher in the Rye" - what seems like depth to someone who has yet to live their life is actually just some tosser whining.

That said, I'll dig it out again and give it a spin this week and see if it does anything more for me now.
 

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I just popped this onto my phone for listening too when I'm in going to Lidls.

There is no higher seal of approval.

Isnt music awesome!
 

travispickle

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My first thoughts are I wish that Aeroplane Over The Sea would fucking crash killing everyone on board, but mainly that whiney bastard and his entire band.
But I've only had one listen in fairness.
This was unwarrented, it's actually growing on me. Cornu Ammonia nails it in his last comment but I'll keep listening. More later.
 

MacDara

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This is the first one I'm not sure I can go through again, not for a couple of days at any rate. It just rings all my alarm bells, that campfire guitar tosser thing. The only song that's made an impression is 'Oh Comely', it feels like it has its own thing going on. I can appreciate the sound of the album (it's hardly lo-fi like GBV lo-fi) and the orchestration, the synths and trad instruments work seamlessly together. And I don't even mind Mangum's voice, even as it starts to sound increasingly affected as the record goes on. But this album does nothing for me.
 

Lili Marlene

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Part of me thinks you need to hear it in your formative years, if you hear it after your teenage years then it's like reading "Catcher in the Rye" - what seems like depth to someone who has yet to live their life is actually just some tosser whining.
Well like any album I'm sure this can help but no, this is not necessarily the case. Like you and the Smiths I was in my 20's before I heard this album and I still think it's great.

And I was coming at it from the point of view of being sick to fucking death of it before I'd even heard the damn thing.
 

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