The most important part of a romantic evening is the atmosphere. You want to feel comfortable and at ease, though sometimes one does get nervous. Trembing in the heat of the moment, anxious as to what shall indeed happen next. You want everything to be just perfect, because you want this moment to last. You want this moment to be with you twenty years from now, even though you'll forget it by next week. You want this moment to be special, because you may never have it again.
The Clientele's newest EP, Lost Weekend is not only a beautiful moment musically, but it also highlights the band's own musical progress and growth. The set starts off with "North School Drive," which is the sonic equivalent of walking home alone after being dumped on a cold December night. It's a haunting, piano-enhanced number. This sad little walk home fades into a little field recording of a busy street, entitled "Boring Postcard," which fades into the most epic Clientele nubmber ever, "Emptily Through Holloway." This is an even-sadder song than before, mainly due to the heart-tearing vocals of Alasdair Maclean, which will simultaneously break your heart and fill your soul with empathy. "Kelvin Parade" is a return to more familar Clientele sounds, harking back to their many 20th Century singles. The moment fades into "Last Orders," a long-ish, sad piano instrumental, that turnes the whoe emontional thermostat down to below zero degrees. You're frozen in time, sad, melancholy.
Then, it's over. This moment, so lovingly brought to you by the Clientele, has passed. Will you have it again? I would certainly hope so. The band's dynamic is much more atmopspheric, much sadder than ever before; the sounds have matured from their earlier records, and Maclean has grown as a songwriter. Lost Weekend is their best record to date, one of the best records of 2002, and one of the best records I own. Each time I press play, I feel the love and the sadness in my life, and I smile/sigh.
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