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Where Have You Been All My Life? VILLAGERS

1

Villagers take the sting out of waiting for the follow-up to "Darling Arithmetic" (2015) – "Where Have You Been All My Life" is a gentle retrospective of their story so far.

If you've ever had the pleasure of experiencing Villagers live, then you'll know full well what mastermind Conor O'Brien and his band from Dublin are capable of. Musical perfection meets genuine passion: it's no great surprise then that you might not notice "Where Have You Been All My Life" is a live album. Well, there is no audience, but they did record the whole album altogether. Here and there, you hear something familiar – even though there's no shortage of rarities and B-sides. They run the various songs together like a well-considered live concert. Villagers deliver a piece of work – perfectly mixed with a loving eye for detail – with all the charm of a purely live performance. Songs like "Memoir", "Courage" and "The Soul Serene" are given a fresh polish with new arrangements and only occasionally is the musical restraint interrupted by striking, impulsive outbreaks. Villagers bring the live session to a close with a sweet cover of the Jimmy Webb classic, "Wichita Lineman". Waiting for your favourite band's next album is rarely this much fun.

Marie von der Heydt | Jan 12, 2016
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