Alligator (The National album)

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Alligator
Studio album by The National
Released April 12, 2005
Recorded Tarquin Studios; Drummerman Studios; Jess and Ole's House; Headgear Studios
Genre Indie rock, post-punk revival
Length 48:00
Language English
Label Beggars Banquet
Producer Peter Katis and Paul Mahajan
The National chronology
Cherry Tree
(2004)
Alligator
(2005)
Boxer
(2007)

Alligator is the third studio album by American indie rock band The National, released on April 12, 2005 on Beggars Banquet. Recorded and produced by Peter Katis and Paul Mahajan, the album brought The National critical acclaim and increased their fanbase significantly.

Alligator appeared on many year-end top 10 lists, including Uncut and Planet Sound, both of which ranked it as the number two album of 2005. Pitchfork Media ranked Alligator at number 40 in their top albums of the 2000s list.[1] Alligator has sold over 200,000 copies worldwide.[2]

The band performed album track "The Geese of Beverly Road" at the wedding of producer Peter Katis. A photo of the band performing on stage, with couples dancing in the foreground, became the cover of the band's next album Boxer.

The band supported Barack Obama's presidential candidacy in 2008. In July of that year, the band designed and sold a T-shirt featuring Obama's image above the words "Mr. November," a reference to both the closing track on the album and the month of the U.S. presidential election. All proceeds were donated to Obama's campaign. The song had been written, in part, about John Kerry's candidacy four years earlier.[3]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars [4]
Uncut 5/10 stars [5]
Pitchfork Media (7.9/10) [6]
Sputnikmusic 5/5 stars [7]
PopMatters (7/10) [8]
POPnews 9/10 stars [9]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars [10]
Stylus A− [11]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Matt Berninger and Aaron Dessner, except where noted. 

No. Title Length
1. "Secret Meeting" (Berninger, A. Dessner, Scott Devendorf) 3:44
2. "Karen" (Berninger, Bryce Dessner) 3:59
3. "Lit Up"   2:55
4. "Looking for Astronauts"   3:23
5. "Daughters of the SoHo Riots" (Berninger, B. Dessner, S. Devendorf) 3:59
6. "Baby, We'll Be Fine"   3:21
7. "Friend of Mine"   3:25
8. "Val Jester" (Berninger, B. Dessner) 3:00
9. "All the Wine" (The National) 3:15
10. "Abel"   3:37
11. "The Geese of Beverly Road" (Berninger, A. Dessner, S. Devendorf) 4:57
12. "City Middle" (Berninger, B. Dessner) 4:28
13. "Mr. November"   3:57
Special edition bonus disc
No. Title Length
1. "The Thrilling of Claire"   4:32
2. "Driver, Surprise Me"   3:20
3. "Lit Up" (Remix) 3:00
4. "Secret Meeting" (Remix) 3:45
5. "The Geese of Beverly Road" (Live) 4:35
6. "Abel" (Enhanced Video)  
7. "Lit Up" (Enhanced Video)  
8. "Daughters of the SoHo Riots" (Enhanced Video)  

Singles[edit]

  • "Abel" (March 14, 2005)
    • CD single b/w: "Driver, Surprise Me" and "Keep It Upstairs"
    • 7" single b/w: "Warm Singing Whores"
    • Digital download b/w: "The Thrilling of Claire"
  • "Secret Meeting" (August 29, 2005)
    • Digital download: "Secret Meeting" (Remix) b/w: "The Geese of Beverly Road" (Live)
  • "Lit Up" (November 14, 2005)
    • CD single: "Lit Up" (Remix) b/w: "You've Done It Again, Virginia"
    • Digital download: "Lit Up" (Remix) b/w: "You've Done It Again, Virginia" and "Lit Up" (Parisian Party Version)

Personnel[edit]

The National
  • Matt Berninger - vocals
  • Aaron Dessner - lead/rhythm guitar, bass, piano, keyboards, vocals
  • Bryce Dessner - rhythm/lead guitar, keyboards
  • Bryan Devendorf - drums, percussion
  • Scott Devendorf - bass, rhythm guitar, vocals
Additional musicians
  • An-Lin Bardin – cello
  • Carin Besser – backing vocals
  • Nathalie Dessner – backing vocals
  • Rachael Elliott – bassoon
  • Peter Katis – backing vocals
  • Nick Lloyd – piano, organ, keyboards
  • Nate Martinez – additional guitar
  • Padma Newsome – viola, violin, piano, organ, orchestration
  • Sara Phillips – clarinet
Recording personnel
  • Paul Mahajan - recording
  • Peter Katis - additional recording and production, mixing
  • Greg Calbi - mastering
Artwork
  • Mathieu Saura - photography
  • Distant Station Ltd. - design

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Top 200 Albums of the 2000s: 50-21". Pitchfork Media. 2009-10-01. Archived from the original on 16 October 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-01. 
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "The National". musicOMH. 2009-08-27. Retrieved 2012-01-13. 
  4. ^ Christopher, James (2005-04-12). "Alligator - The National". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-01-13. 
  5. ^ "The National - Alligator". Uncut.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  6. ^ "The National: Alligator | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. 2005-04-04. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  7. ^ "13 Apr 2005". Sputnikmusic.com. 2009-11-03. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  8. ^ Horan, Mark. "25 Apr 2005". Popmatters.com. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  9. ^ "The National - Alligator". Popnews.com. 2011-11-18. Retrieved 2012-01-13. 
  10. ^ [2][dead link]
  11. ^ "The National - Alligator - Review". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved 2012-01-13.