Following the National’s ‘Letterman’ performance of ‘Don’t Swallow the Cap’ on Monday night (May 20), the show’s host complimented the Brooklyn-based band on a job well done, appropriately remarking, “A lot going on there.” Yes, there was, as Thomas Bartlett — who goes by the stage name Doveman — sat in with the group on keyboard, joining the string and horn sections also guesting on the tune.
The National pretty much summed up their aesthetic 10 years ago with the title of their second album, ‘Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers.’ No other blog-blessed indie band of the 21st century captures despair, melancholy and gloom in song quite like the Brooklyn-based quintet. Much of the gloom can be credited to singer Matt Berninger, whose grim baritone infuses the National’s songs with apocalyptic dread. Every heartbreak sounds like the literal end of the world when it comes from his lips.
Created back in 2004 in Melbourne, Australia, the St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival has since traveled to New Zealand and Singapore, and this year, the indie music event makes its U.S. debut on Sept. 14 in Detroit, Mich. Sigur Ros and the National are set to headline, and support acts include Deerhunter, Solange, Savages, Frightened Rabbits and more.
The National's 'Sea of Love,' off the forthcoming album 'Trouble Will Find Me,' is a thick, moody song. The video is the total opposite. It's lively and alive, and features the indie rockers performing in a cramped white space, wearing coordinated suits and trying to play their instruments despite space limitations.
Fans of the National won't be able to find the band's new album, ‘Trouble Will Find Me,' in stores until May 20, but it doesn't take much searching to find several tracks bound for the disc online. A few weeks ago, the New York rockers premiered three songs (‘Heavenfaced,' ‘Graceless’ and ‘Fireproof’) during a secret show in Berlin. A week later, the disc's first single, 'Demons,' surfaced online, followed a few days later by another cut, 'Don’t Swallow the Cap.'
One of Europe's longest-running festivals -- both in terms of how many years it's been around and how many days it runs each year -- Denmark's Roskilde festival has announced its lineup for 2013. Kraftwerk, the National, Sigur Rós and Queens of the Stone Age are among the bands slated to headline this year's event, with nu-metal mavens Slipknot and R&B superstar Rihanna among the eclectic list of other artists at the top of the bill.
'Don't Swallow the Cap' isn't just good advice for children from the National -- it's also the title of a tune off their forthcoming album, 'Trouble Will Find Me,' which drops May 21.
Earlier this week, the band issued the disc's first single, a catchy little number called 'Demons,' and 'Don't Swallow the Cap' follows with a more upbeat vibe, complete with swelling, symphonic strings. Check it out below.