I finally picked up the new Okkervil River album, Stage Names, after some critical acclaim, having never really listened to them before. The first two songs, "Our Life Is Not a Movie or Maybe" and "Unless It Kicks" are the definite highlights of the album, songs along the line of Arcade Fire's "Neighborhood #1" or the Shins' "Kissing the Lipless" that get that well of emotion building up in your chest and make you lose focus on whatever it is you're doing when they comes on. The rest of the album mellows out a bit, which I suppose is a good thing because an entire album of songs as intense as these two might make be a bit overkill.
They are coming to Logan Square Auditorium September 18, and though I'd be interested in seeing if the emotional intensity of these songs translates well to the live stage, it's the same night as the Simian Mobile Disco show at the Empty Bottle, which I already have tickets for. The perennial problem of living in a city with so much music to offer.