July 03, 2005

The Walkmen

Hamilton Leithauser

I've liked The Walkmen ever since I first heard "We've Been Had" from Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone (2002/startime).

+ We've Been Had

A song that, along with the rest of the record, can somehow evoke the icy melancholy of mid-winter and trigger a suppressed longing for the warm summer sun. Funnily enough, listening to it now as summer beats down upon us, it stirs an oddly claustrophobic winter sensation. One where you are always encased in protective layers, or behind some shield, protection against the cold wind and snow. Winter and claustrophobia? Santa Claustrophobia! A condition only suffered by children between the ages of 3 and 7. Where these children feel the overbearing, and overwhelming, pressure to be good, or there will be no presents under the tree.

Bows and Arrows / record collection

Off of their latest album, Bows and Arrows (2004/record collection), comes one of the most aggressive songs the band has recorded at Marcata (The Walkmen's own studio), "The Rat". From lead singer Hamilton Leithauser's barely held in check fury (much more evident when seen performed live--In fact, he often looks like he's going to hurt himself as he puts so much into each song), to guitarist Paul Maroon's arm slashing it's way into a blur, and the tremendous propulsion provided by drummer, Matt Barrick. This song is the polar opposite in feel to Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone. "The Rat" is steamy and hot, soaked in the sweat of summer and desire.

+ the rat

**Visit The Walkmen's website to see them perform "The Rat" live on Letterman.

**The band will play the Lollapalooza Festival in Chicago's Grant Park on July 23rd. They'll also be at the Sunset Junction Festival in LA in late August and the Austin City Limits Festival in September.

+ wake up
+ everyone who pretended to like me is gone
+ what's in it for me


*The Walkmen can be downloaded from emusic*


  1. Anonymous12:18:00 PM

    Great page. Look at mein.

  2. Nice! The Walkmen are a band that has largely flown under my radar for quite some time. "The Rat" was basically all I knew of them till now. Which album of theirs would you recommend I listen to next time I'm in HMV?

  3. james - since it was the first i had i've got to recommend you start with "everyone who pretended..."

    and if you get the chance, see them live.

  4. Thanks for the tip Alan! I'm actually making plans with a friend of mine to go see them on the 22nd of July :) By the way, I linked this page on my blog here.