This week we continue our newly released album review with
The National – Sleep Well Beast

Review: Jamie Read.


There should not be a yard stick for music, but it goes without saying that there often is. 

When you listen to enough music you start to have expectations for bands and genres.

I treat music as a very personal thing. While I like to listen and sing along to most tracks on any of my streamed playlists, my favourite music has heart and emotion behind it.

This year I have listened to music from the rock genre which I took a severe dislike to because it felt like it was run of the mill – farmed out to line the pockets of artists and producers alike.

Therefore, a more uncompromising and progressive band gives me greater joy.

American band, The National gives just that with Sleep Well Beast.

From the start to the finish, it’s a moody and personal sound.

Nobody Else Will Be There paints a harrowing picture of being in a possibly stale relationship.

It’s a look back at different kinds of releases to get away from negativity on Day I Die.

The use of metaphor is well-thought out on Empire Line. The track uses a New York City train to convey the growing distance in a long-standing relationship.

This personal approach, especially about relationships, is conveyed in many of the tracks. The music is not upbeat, at all, but it’s honest and personal – especially on a marriage revealing Guilty Party.

“You’re sleeping night and day. How’d you do it? Me I am wide awake, feeling defeated.”

A plethora of emotions from some very thought-provoking music, best enjoyed alone with time to reflect.


Overall star rating: 3/5

Songs to play on repeat: Guilty Party, Empire Line, Day I Die