Andrew Bird’s new album is ‘Are You Serious.’ Now the music critics are weighing in on the highly anticipated new release from the singer, lyricist and violinist; his first full-length solo album in four years. Here’s a roundup of reviews.
The new album, the 12th overall, is the first from Andrew Bird since ‘Break it Yourself’ of 2012 and its official release date is April Fool’s Day, Friday, April 1st, and it’s among many albums due out that day, and competition is fierce among the likes of Weezer and others. But nonetheless, this is the first album from Andrew Bird since 2012 and it’s much anticipated and getting a lot of buzz despite the massive number of artists competing for our increasingly limited attention span in this multi-platform media and social media world.
Yes, Andrew Bird is an original. After all, there are few singer-songwriters in the indie music spheres right now whose principal instrument is the violin and/or who are professional whistlers. Bird, of course is all that and more. For decades now he has been bringing gravitas and artistry that has wowed the critics and the fans alike.
In an interview with NPR he said of the songs on his new album, “These are just the strongest melodies and the strongest ideas that occurred to me over a three to four year period, distilled.”
And in this day and age of musical collaborations, that box is checked with the new album. The renown singer and multi-instrumentalist Fiona Apple is his collaborator on ‘Left-Handed Kisses’ (music video below). Guitarist Blake Mills is also a featured artist.
Now that the album is out, the critics are having their say. Here’s a roundup.
“….There’s a lot going on in nearly every one of these 11 songs, and missing a single instrument in the mix means that you’re missing out on a key element of why this album works. It has plenty of flaws, some more obvious than others, and it comes close to running out of steam toward the middle of its 43 minutes, but the production and sheer musical prowess on display propel the album beyond its shortcomings……” — Pretty Much Amazing
“….The album is one of Bird’s strongest to date and is a beautiful example of what Andrew Bird is musically capable of. […] Overall, Are You Serious is an album of opposites that somehow seem to attract, this creates a strong mix of different songs that fit together flawlessly, although it feels like they shouldn’t. This juxtaposition perfectly sums up Andrew Bird as a musician. Should these songs work so well together? No, probably not. But, Andrew Bird somehow makes it work……” — Hit the Floor
“….Are You Serious may not be as romantically orchestrated as Bird’s pillar LPs, Andrew Bird & the Mysterious Production of Eggs and Armchair Apocrypha, but it embraces a style full of heart nonetheless. Break It Yourself played out like a half-hearted record of indebted songs; Are You Serious swells with inspiration, the puffed chest of a bird outside your window with songs it has to sing, songs you want to wake up to. Though the album has its moments of treaded water, the majority welcomes back the musician whose depth, curiosity, and high-brow intellect won us over in the ‘90s…..” –Consequence of Sound
“….Given Bird’s classical training and devotion to precision, his work has always had at least the potential to become bloodless and pale — the work of a perfectionist who agonizes over every note, only to let his busy brain mute his own beating heart. Instead, though, his writing keeps sounding warmer, sweeter, more thoughtful and approachable, while continuing to land lines that stick with you for days…..” –NPR
Clearly the critics are pleased and have much to say about it! Time will tell as to whether fans will respond in kind. In the meantime, you can see music videos and Andrew Bird’s ‘Area You Serious’ album cover art below!
Pictures: PR Photos