Tanglewood Numbers - Silver Jews
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Universal acclaim - based on 32 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 22 Ratings

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  • Summary: Will Oldham and members of the Jesus Lizard and Lambchop guest on David Berman's country-tinged fifth Silver Jews disc, which also sees the return of on-again, off-again band member Stephen Malkmus.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. 91
    Tanglewood roars back to life with a massive band, a detailed sound, and a voice that sounds ravaged but right. [Oct 2005, p.142]
  2. Berman's most accomplished album.
  3. 86
    Tanglewood Numbers probably won't win many new fans, but it will make the cult of David grow fonder. [#17, p.104]
  4. The more I listened to Tanglewood Numbers, the more I liked it.
  5. A languid yet invigorating shrine to indie-pop, Americana, and nudie shirt psychedelia that electrifies the blood and squeegees the mind.
  6. Weird, and often wonderful. [22 Oct 2005]
  7. If another band were to serve up the fiddling strings and lollygagging vocal harmonies of “Animal Shapes,” the wanky guitar breakdowns of “The Poor, The Fair, and the Good,” perhaps Tanglewood Numbers wouldn’t feel like such a disappointment. But Berman’s a brilliant lyricist with 30 or 40 minutes to spare every couple of years, and his voice seems oddly absent from this record.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 14
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 14
  3. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. romanmc
    Feb 27, 2006
    You will not be dissapointed. Berman flat-out embarrasses anyone else out there trying to compete with him in lyrical craft. The music is varied on this outing as well. A much fuller pallete than other albums. Expand
  2. BrainZ
    Dec 12, 2005
    He's back, niggers.
  3. timothym
    Jan 29, 2006
    dc is my hero
  4. CrileyL
    Oct 19, 2005
    Awesome return to a full band sound for the Jews, more rocking than previous efforts.
  5. MatthewP
    Oct 28, 2005
    This album rocks where the other Joos albums rolled. The keyboards are a weird, cool touch.
  6. Henry
    Oct 23, 2005
    The Sliver Jews do it again! This is a really good album. it's good to hear DCB sounding like he's having some fun and as usual, writing great music. Expand
  7. DuderR
    Oct 18, 2005
    A bit of a let down after a four year wait. The album has a studio sound with tracks that sound more like Dire Straits than anything you've ever heard from Berman before. I'm sure a lot of longtime fans will be put off by this but that's not really my complaint with this album. It sounds great but Berman's characteristic poetic wit seems to have abandoned him. Perhaps he intentionaly jettisoned it along with the sad, addictive depressive side of himself that damn near killed him last year in order to produce this happier radio friendly rock N' roll album. Unfortunately I fear that side of him may have been the side responsible for his dark and trenchant self depricating humor and his all-too-close-to-home soul baring lyrics that deliver a very personal and macabre thrill for Silver Jews fans. Berman's lyrics have always stradled the line between tounge- in-cheek camp and outright maudlin and mawkish, but this time he has fallen over the fence and landed squarely on the wrong side. With a scant few exceptions Berman's formerly original poetic wittisims have been replaced with unctuous tired platitudes and cliches. That being said, its not an entirely bad album, its far from being unlistenable and there are probably a few keepers here for the longtime Jews fan. Still better than your average Alt-Country/folkie indie rock album. Expand

See all 14 User Reviews