I've gone ahead and used the occasion of the latest OKKERVIL RIVER release (THE STAND INS; 09.09.08) to cobble together a career-spanning compilation of the Austin band's work -- almost half of which you can download below.
In the past, I have written about the band as follows:
"I first discovered [these guys] with the ragged epic "The War Criminal Rises and Speaks," and I've been with them ever since. There's something unhinged about them -- the charmingly circuitous lyrics; WILL SHEFF's cracked, semi-hysterical voice; the warm-yet-eccentric instrumentation."
While Okkervil River's recent releases have been decidedly higher-fi than their earlier efforts, the sense of ramshackle crackle-and-pop remains. These guys, most thankfully, will never be MAROON 5. And, no matter how much they clean up and smooth out the production, Sheff's voice will never be mistaken for a clean, smooth instrument. Compelling, yes. Dramatic, yes. Perpetually navigating the ground between a swoon and a stagger? Yes, just that.
(And, for all you Greedy Guses out there, you can nab the above-mentioned "The War Criminal Rises and Speaks" by nabbing the collection that's nestled [HERE]. Shameless self-promotion? Yeah, I guess, sort of. Except... you know... it's all free, so... whatever.)
OKKERVIL RIVER on MySPACE.
From the LP THE STAND INS, 2008 >>>
[MP3] "Lost Coastlines"
[MP3] "On Tour With Zykos"
From the LP THE STAGE NAMES, 2007 >>>
[MP3] "Unless It's Kicks"
From the EP BLACK SHEEP BOY (APPENDIX), 2005 >>>
[MP3] "No Key, No Plan"
From the LP BLACK SHEEP BOY, 2005 >>>
[MP3] "A King and a Queen"
From the LP DON'T FALL IN LOVE WITH EVERYONE YOU SEE, 2002 >>>
From the LP STARS TOO SMALL TO USE, 1999 >>>
[MP3] "The Velocity of Saul at the Time of His Conversion"