Albums to watch

I Am Easy To Find

The National

I Am Easy To Find

Album number eight from the Ohio indie rock band recorded in Aaron Dessner's home studio features guest appearances from Sharon Van Etten, Gail Ann Dorsey, Lisa Hannigan, Kate Stables, Mina Tindle and the Brooklyn Youth Choir

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  1. 10.0 |   A.V. Club

    The National’s never been afraid to dial things down, but it’s rarely sounded as vulnerable as it does here—song after song, Dessner’s vibrant, moody arrangements serve to reflect Berninger’s precarious balance of hope and frustration
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  2. 10.0 |   The Skinny

    A thrillingly ambitious, deeply collaborative game-changer
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  3. 9.5 |   Northern Transmissions

    ‘I Am Easy To Find’ is the sound of The National at their creative peak, with little sign to indicate they’re due to plateau anytime soon
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  4. 9.0 |   XS Noize

    The National have absolutely surpassed ‘Sleep Well Beast’ on this record. The music is reinventive while still maintaining the bands signature style and Matt Berninger remains one of indie rocks greatest lyricists, even when other voices are singing his words
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  5. 9.0 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    The nature of the project is in a way their own noble experiment, ultimately finding them at their boldest and most assured to date
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  6. 9.0 |   The Music

    We feel our ribcages cracking open, hearts beating bloody on the floor
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  7. 9.0 |   Exclaim

    It might challenge some fans and may not ever grow on others, but more than anything, it proves that the National are not the band you thought they were. They're way more than that
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  8. 9.0 |   Paste Magazine

    Rarely, if ever, do bands set forth a record this accomplished about 20 years into their careers. But, as has been the case upon nearly every release since Alligator, The National have put out another album that could easily be argued as their best
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  9. 8.5 |   Under The Radar

    A National album like no other
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  10. 8.2 |   Sputnik Music (staff)

    A record of hairpin turns, detours and loose ends, of memories in your grasp and then slipping away. It’s a damn fine National album
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  11. 8.0 |   Rolling Stone

    Indie-rock standard-bearers pivot to collectivist art-making with 70+ musicians and a host of women’s voices, to potent effect
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  12. 8.0 |   No Ripcord

    I Am Easy To Find resembles a closing-down sale, with ideas being thrown around whether they fit or not — even the inclusion of Rylan (first recorded during the High Violet sessions) comes across as a knowing nod
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  13. 8.0 |   Clash

    With new voices, new avenues of exploration and new lyrical viewpoints, The National, alongside producer-director Mike Mills, once again show their ability to reinvent themselves to produce something that is more than just an album
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  14. 8.0 |   Evening Standard

    At times, as with much of their recent material, it can be too tasteful and serene. More raw passion would provoke a stronger emotional response. But to see a band pushing further, dramatically changing the formula this far into their career, is a beautiful thing
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  15. 8.0 |   American Songwriter

    The National prove with I Am Easy To Find that they don’t need the old bang and clatter to achieve their signature melancholic glory
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  16. 8.0 |   The Guardian

    Understated songs full of trademark emotional intensity
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  17. 8.0 |   PopMatters

    The National's eighth album is not as easy to locate or to live with, as its title suggests, but it contains passages of sublime beauty and grace
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  18. 8.0 |   Loud And Quiet

    Essentially, this album is up there with the National’s best
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  19. 8.0 |   Slant Magazine

    The band’s widest-ranging and most surprising effort to date
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  20. 8.0 |   Record Collector

    At 68 minutes long and 16 tracks, its length becomes an issue during a third quarter which drifts. But as an exercise in breaking with consistency, I Am Easy To Find shows The National remain open to new possibilities after all
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  21. 8.0 |   Mojo

    It's a record filled with beauty that tries to do what therapy does: sort through a mess of emotions and reorganise them into something that makes more sense. Print edition only

  22. 8.0 |   Uncut

    The relentless mid-tempos at times make this epic 16-track album drag, but on the devastating "Not In Kansas" and the frantic "Where Is Her Head" Berninger once again proves himself rock's most astute and humane chronicler of everyday crises of faith. Print edition only

  23. 8.0 |   Q

    In its gathering of new sounds, new singers and new structures comes a deeper message: that change is not always something to fear. Print edition only

  24. 8.0 |   The Irish Times

    By the time we get to album closer Light Years, The National have given us soundtracks to many days lived, and yet to be lived
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  25. 8.0 |   Punk News

    They’re never going to knock you down with their raw power. But, like the Midwestern cities of southwestern Ohio that birthed them … you’ll find a lot of beauty if you stick around long enough
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  26. 8.0 |   NME

    This eighth National album is the accompaniment to a 25-minute art-house movie. And yet – lush, profound, experimental – it's also much more than that
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  27. 8.0 |   DIY

    They turn the lens outwards for the first time
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  28. 7.6 |   Pitchfork

    With a cast of female vocalists guiding and redirecting the songs, the National’s eighth album is their largest, longest, and most daring
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  29. 7.0 |   musicOMH

    The album as a whole falls short of The National’s best work. Yet it is, in places, an admirable detour
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  30. 7.0 |   Spectrum Culture

    A much-needed rejoinder to the idea that the band has rested on their laurels
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  31. 7.0 |   All Music

    I Am Easy to Find has loose ends and picturesque detours in addition to a revolving cast of characters and a suggestion of mess that give the album an appealingly unkempt sense of humanity
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  32. 6.8 |   Gig Soup

    After two decades, the ever-impressive Ohioans open their doors to allow a new perspective to take centre stage. The results are mixed but when they are good, they are rather great
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  33. 6.7 |   Consequence Of Sound

    Talented guests and solid songwriting make for an overall welcome record
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  34. 6.7 |   Earbuddy

    Listen to how perfectly "Light Years" works with just Berninger and the band and a subtle touch of backing vocals. It's likely the one you'll remember from this album the most
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  35. 6.0 |   The Independent

    The band’s eighth album feels like an old friend you’re pleased to keep around, but it suffers from spiritual jet lag
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  36. 4.0 |   The 405

    The National may be Easy to Find, but inspiration is decidedly less so
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  37. 4.0 |   The Observer

    Perhaps the only elements missing from this overegged affair are, crucially, excitement and anything so much as a memorable melody
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  38. 4.0 |   The FT

    In their latest album, the American indie group maximise on texture and disillusionment but fail to create anything memorable
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