A Name That Means Nothing – The National

The National began in 1999 in Ohio and has now moved on to New York City.  They are a band who are difficult to pin down and that is a large part of their appeal.  Not surprising coming from a band that chose its name because it does not mean anything.  It truly is a family affair with The National as they have two sets of brothers including one set of twins.  The band is comprised of Matt Berninger (vocals), Aaron Dessner (keyboards/guitar), Bryce Dessner (guitar), Bryan Devendorf (drums), and Scott Devendorf (bass).

In regards to their sound they have been compared to acts like Joy Division, Wilco and Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds.  Several members of the band met while in university.  After playing some gigs together they released their first album in 2001 entitled The National.  It was released on a label called Brassland Records which was co-founded by Bryce and Aaron. Critics were generally positive about these 12 alt-country/pop songs.  Pretty much since they have started the band has released an album every two years.

Their latest (and 7th) album was recently released.  Sleep Well Beast sees the band going in a different direction soundwise.  It is about a painful break-up and the sound sees some electronica creeping in. Despite the different sound, it still met with critical acclaim as well as doing well on the album charts.

Besides making music the band has also involved itself with a couple of issues and charities.  The National was heavily involved in the election campaign and again to reelect Barack Obama.  They also played in the Dark Was the Night festival which saw its proceeds go towards the fight against AIDS and at a benefit show for Philip Glass’s Tibet House.

The general admission shows are sold out.

Additional Information:

-Date:  December 7 + 8, 2017

-Venue:  MTELUS

-Website:  www.americanmary.com

-Ticket Purchase:  www.ticketmaster.ca

-Ticket Price:  $57.00 (plus handling charges)

-Show Time:  8:00 p.m.  (Doors @ 7:00 p.m.)

-Opening Act:  This Is the Kit

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