The Random iTunes Dairy has been reading the blog again. How else can we explain today’s “random” selection from The Shins’ album Port of Morrow just two days after I sang its praises?
This is the title track and the album’s final song, and it has a much more ethereal quality than the rest of the record. James Mercer sings in a falsetto reminiscent of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke.
A few years ago I counted down my favorite albums of the decade so far and The Shins’ Port of Morrow took the #1 spot. I’ll have to revisit that exercise as the end of the 00’s gets closer, and when I do, I’m confident that album will remain at or near the top.
Five years after Port of Morrow‘s release, The Shins have finally released a new album, Heartworms. Will it give its predecessor some competition on that list?
Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#1 – The Shins – Port of Morrow
I remember a line a TV commentator used to describe the Denver Broncos’ Terrell Davis, during the brief stint in the late 90s when he was the NFL’s best running back.
“His strength is that he has no weaknesses.”
Top Songs of 2012 – #2
My second favorite song of the year comes from my second favorite album, The Shins’ Port of Morrow. Singer/songwriter James Mercer outdid himself on this album, shedding the backing musicians who’d accompanied him on the previous Shins albums then crafting the band’s best work yet.
Though Port of Morrow‘s songs run the gamut content-wise, its finest moment belongs to the most old-fashioned topic of all — the love song.
The Shins’ most recent album, Port of Morrow, is chock full of excellent songs about a wide and fascinating range of topics. One in particular, ‘Fall of ’82,’ stands out for me because it’s an ode to singer-songwriter James Mercer’s older sister.
These lyrics remind me very much of my relationship with my own sister, who was always my first and best confidant. It’s a relationship I see mirrored in her own children, who are also five years apart, a younger brother and older sister.