The New Pornographers
Challengers

Matador
2007
B-
Reviewed by: Ian Cohen
Reviewed on: 2007-08-20



Posted 08/20/2007 - 09:47:12 AM by smwynne:
 I wish this album was a B-. Unfortunately, it is something far more disheartening.
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 10:46:07 AM by mirakle:
 I've only heard Myriad Harbour and My Rights Versus Yours...it sounds like after Twin Cinema everyone except Dan Bejar went on a permanent valium drip. Dan Bejar did not, as he was boring without it. I was hoping it was a case of record companies not knowing which songs were worth leaking, but according to your review the album is just disappointing. Damn.
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 11:11:49 AM by Bertson:
 I don't understand why everyone is giving this one the "big change in the discography" reviews. To me, it just sounds like an extension of what they were doing on Twin Cinema. Electric Version -> Twin Cinema still seems like the biggest shift in their sound to me.
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 11:14:38 AM by mvdu76:
 Take it from me and many others - it's not disappointing. It has some of the New Pornographers' prettiest songs, in fact. If you're worried about a lack of the old hooks, they are also there. Less frantic, but there. The only thing missing is a good review on the CD from Stylus. I bought it and am glad I did.
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 01:31:35 PM by arsetothat:
 I also don't understand why everyone is so disappointed with this album. Maybe it's a reflexive backlash against a critical favorite, but I for one think said backlash is premature. Challengers is another great album from a consistently great group of songwriters. Perhaps the expectations were just too high, which is understandable for a band like the New Pornographers, but I'm just happy to get a new batch of songs from them. There's no way they could ever be less than good, and what more could you reasonably expect from a 4th album by a group of this caliber?
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 06:32:49 PM by fleezer:
 compare to twin cinema this album is a dead fish
 
Posted 08/20/2007 - 07:26:00 PM by cwperry:
 Ugh. Dan Bejar, please release an EP of the songs you sing with these people so that I don't have to actually buy a New Pornographers album. You're the only thing about them that I care about.
 
Posted 08/21/2007 - 05:59:30 PM by hardcoracle:
 This sounds like their Bossanova. There's still enough here to have made them indie superstars if they weren't already.
 
Posted 08/22/2007 - 04:45:19 PM by mtwill:
 a lot of people are going to be revising their opinions of this record at the end of the year - up. i don't know whether its better than TC or not, but its a really excellent record. i suppose there is lots to be said pro and con about any genuinely interesting record, but this review is another ian cohen goofball special.