The National will follow the highly annoying trend of re-issuing a record in expanded form within months of the official release when they release a 2-CD version of High Violet on November 23. One of my great personal disappointments thus far in 2010 is that I haven’t had time to sit down and write a proper review of one of my favorite albums of 2010. This will give me a second chance.
High Violet was released to widespread critical acclaim this spring and gave the band their highest-ever chart debut. The expanded edition will include the original, 11-track album on the first disc and the second disc will feature previously unreleased studio tracks, B-sides, and live material taken from early promotional appearances for the record.
I’ll be taking in two National shows in the next week – Sunday in Nashville, Tuesday in Atlanta – and if those shows are anything like the previous National shows I’ve seen, I’ll return suitably immersed and obsessed- maybe obsessed enough to write a review of the first 11 songs on this record and return to the expanded edition in November.
I can tell you a little about the expanded edition as two of the songs – “Walk Off” and “Sin-Eaters” are B-sides that were made available when High Violet was released through iTunes. I’ve heard both songs. “Sin-Eaters” was strong enough to have been the twelfth song on High Violet and I’d argue strong enough to have replaced a track on the album if they felt strongly about keeping it at 11 songs. “Walk Off” is also good although not as strong as “Sin-Eaters.”
The alternate version of “Terrible Love” will be interesting to hear. Many fans feel the studio version of it is inferior to the way it sounds live. I’ve heard them perform this on TV and in person and I tend to agree. The current studio version of the song is good but doesn’t have the same impact that it does live. Most songs on High Violet were fussed over repeatedly and it’s entirely possible a better version of “Terrible Love” got left on the cutting room floor. This will be a chance to find out.
- ‘Terrible Love’
- ‘Anyone’s Ghost’
- ‘Little Faith’
- ‘Afraid of Everyone’
- ‘Bloodbuzz Ohio’
- ‘Conversation 16’
- ‘Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks’
- ‘Terrible Love (Alternate Version)’
- ‘Wake Up You Saints’
- ‘You Were a Kindness’
- ‘Walk Off’
- ‘Bloodbuzz Ohio (Live On KCMP)’
- ‘Anyone’s Ghost (Live At Brooklyn Academy of Music)’
- ‘England (Live At Brooklyn Academy Of Music)’