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The National — Fake Empire
Album: Boxer
Avg rating:
7.3

Your rating:
Total ratings: 2406









Released: 2007
Length: 3:20
Plays (last 30 days): 5
Stay out super late tonight
Picking apples, making pies
Put a little something in our lemonade
And take it with us

We're half awake in a fake empire
We're half awake in a fake empire

Tiptoe through our shiny city
With our diamond slippers on
Do our gay ballet on ice
Bluebirds on our shoulders

We're half awake in a fake empire
We're half awake in a fake empire

Turn the light out, say goodnight
No thinking for a little while
Let's not try to figure out
Everything at once
It's hard to keep track of you
Falling through the sky

We're half awake in a fake empire
We're half awake in a fake empire
Comments (186)add comment
 finnie wrote:

To all the folks who've been knocking the National's drummer, Brian Devendorf, well save it man.
 Devendorf is a hell of a drummer. Those of us who are percussionists know the real deal. 




I agree , a very, very good drummer. You just have to listen on "Blodbuz ohio", so brilliant. Who can deny?
Great song - mesmeric.  Brings back so many memories........
Great album, great song IMO.
Why are some people so pompous about their own choice of music?
Fantastic song. The National is one of my favourite bands  
 BBoyes wrote:

I like his voice: effortless baritone with a lot of easy power behind it. Like Eddy Vedder and Greg Brown.



modern day Gordon Lightfoot :-)
 SchoepTone wrote:

Maybe they should bring T-Swift in to do the lead vocals. She would bring a bit more nuance and liveliness to the singing.

 DrMacDaddy wrote:

I have a policy to never give the Thumbs Down to any comment on RP, but every rule is eventually broken.

Apparently sarcasm doesn't translate well on internet message boards.
Genius song.
 LPCity wrote:

"We'll have to wait, for our steak and pie."



I know guys who will wait quite a while for their steak and pie. 
"We'll have to wait, for our steak and pie."
 Desmond wrote:

This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.

I have submitted several high quality songs with all required info that are consistent with the Radio Paradise feel; all were rejected, and they accept this?

You're drifting guys. Please don't wreck a good thing.



Tell us more about your high quality songs!
As you know so much about the Radio Paradise feel, everyone here should be blown away by your suggestions...
 SchoepTone wrote:

Maybe they should bring T-Swift in to do the lead vocals. She would bring a bit more nuance and liveliness to the singing.



I have a policy to never give the Thumbs Down to any comment on RP, but every rule is eventually broken.
Maybe they should bring T-Swift in to do the lead vocals. She would bring a bit more nuance and liveliness to the singing.
You're right and everyone else is wrong?

 
Desmond wrote:
This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.

I have submitted several high quality songs with all required info that are consistent with the Radio Paradise feel; all were rejected, and they accept this?

You're drifting guys. Please don't wreck a good thing.
 

Most overplayed song on RP.
I like how the beat is as the water meeting the beach
you have some going one way and then blending into another going a slightly different direction
Seems to fit well with what's been happening!
If The National, then Swans please.
The more I hear from the National the more they grow on me.  Took a while but I am kinda slow.
 Desmond wrote:
This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.
I have submitted several high quality songs with all required info that are consistent with the Radio Paradise feel; all were rejected, and they accept this?
You're drifting guys. Please don't wreck a good thing.
 
Bill, please note, this guy knows the "Radio Paradise feel" and he is letting you know that this song "has no place on Radio Paradise". In future, please get his approval for all new songs. 
Imagine, the owner of the station thinking he can pick the tunes; the nerve!
(Please file his comment under "W", for "What-evah!".)
"We're half away in a pecan pie"
It's hard not to like this band.
Until I saw the song title, I thought he was singing, "We're half awake in a bacon pie."  Time for a hearing test perhaps?
The more I hear it the more I like it. Very nostalgic. Love the horns.
 Laptopdog wrote:

At least Eddie Vedder has a range and can really lift his voice and soar with the other members of Pearl Jam. This guy with The National just drones on in a monotonous tone throughout every song, which for me really limits the musical performance of the other band members.
 
Well then, just only listen to Eddie, ok? And don't concern yourself with other singers. Since, if other singers don't sound like Eddie, then what's the point? Right? Why limit the musical performance if it's not, um, Eddie; totally agree.
Fuckinggroovin... 
I first became aware of The National as a front act for Arcade Fire in DC. Didn't know anything about them, but they caught my attention. Arcade Fire was pretty damn good too!
 Ptijoc wrote:

I totally agree, he is fantastic, and this band too!
 
Check out the Tiny Desk Concert - pretty great. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TdFCD3oXMZo


 jules44 wrote:
God I love this band!! Saw them live, finally.  
 

manage to stay awake?

prolly a show where being on your phone is actually better than the show
About time we woke up from our fake empire, eh?
 BBoyes wrote:
I like his voice: effortless baritone with a lot of easy power behind it. Like Eddy Vedder and Greg Brown.
 
At least Eddie Vedder has a range and can really lift his voice and soar with the other members of Pearl Jam. This guy with The National just drones on in a monotonous tone throughout every song, which for me really limits the musical performance of the other band members.
May I suggest Santa Clara or You've Done It Again, Virginia? Anything Ntl. and I'm blissfully happy and sad all at the same time.
 Proclivities wrote:


"Effortless" is one word to describe his vocalizing, others may say lifeless, indifferent, muttered, or lazy.  It works for him, the band, and their material, which is really all that matters to them and their fans.
 
I couldn't agree more. His lack of energy when he sings just drags the music down for me. On. Every. Single. Song.
These guys just do absolutely zero for me.  I hear their live shows are great though.
 r_lafauce wrote:
Jussie Smollett comes to mind.... a page out of our current 'trash' nation culture, unfortunately.
 
Says you trumptard
 jules44 wrote:
God I love this band!! Saw them live, finally.  
 
Many years ago I saw them as an opening act for Arcade Fire. Had never heard of them, but I was blown away. Been a fan since.
Jussie Smollett comes to mind.... a page out of our current 'trash' nation culture, unfortunately.
yawn
Awesome song, thank you RP!
awful
consistently awful
 BBoyes wrote:
I like his voice: effortless baritone with a lot of easy power behind it. Like Eddy Vedder and Greg Brown.
 

"Effortless" is one word to describe his vocalizing, others may say lifeless, indifferent, muttered, or lazy.  It works for him, the band, and their material, which is really all that matters to them and their fans.
God I love this band!! Saw them live, finally.  
 Desmond wrote:
This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.
 
Weird that you've decided this, yet it seems to have no effect on the playlist.  I can't imagine why that might be.
"We are halfway through the vegan pie"
We're halfway when we're bakin pie. 
This is not a comment. Just random musings. Not even as coherent as literature or poetry.



Desmond wrote:

This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.

I have submitted several high quality songs with all required info that are consistent with the Radio Paradise feel; all were rejected, and they accept this?

You're drifting guys. Please don't wreck a good thing.

 
 melzabutch wrote:
I'm getting a Nick Cave vibe and that is a good thing.  

 
ditto that comment
 Desmond wrote:
This is not music.

 
This is a trip.
This song is prophetic!  I guess these guys knew something back in 2007.  {#Notworthy}
This is not music. Just random noise. Not even as coherent as industrial or jazz. It has no place on Radio Paradise.

I have submitted several high quality songs with all required info that are consistent with the Radio Paradise feel; all were rejected, and they accept this?

You're drifting guys. Please don't wreck a good thing.
Indeed!
 
decorgirl wrote:
I heard this with new ears today, thanks to the commenters who vouched for the drummer.   What a beautiful day to be alive beneath the sweet balm of our beloved Radio Paradise.  

 


I heard this with new ears today, thanks to the commenters who vouched for the drummer.   What a beautiful day to be alive beneath the sweet balm of our beloved Radio Paradise.  
Bill takes care of me, I hit PSD when this came on and I got Aretha shoutin' out to me now
 finnie wrote:
To all the folks who've been knocking the National's drummer, Brian Devendorf, well save it man.
 Devendorf is a hell of a drummer. Those of us who are percussionists know the real deal. 

 
I totally agree, he is fantastic, and this band too!
 floydoftherocks wrote:
The worst act on RP, by far. {#Foot-in-mouth}

 
not quite but they are kinda boring, 
 
I like his voice: effortless baritone with a lot of easy power behind it. Like Eddy Vedder and Greg Brown.
I'm getting a Nick Cave vibe and that is a good thing.  
To all the folks who've been knocking the National's drummer, Brian Devendorf, well save it man.
 Devendorf is a hell of a drummer. Those of us who are percussionists know the real deal. 
 yoooreds wrote:
I'm starting to love The National. I used to be indifferent to them, but was lucky to see them live in LA, and they were great live. The Music then clicked with me.

 
I was a casual fan until I saw them live, then they became top 10 easily. Incredible performers.
I'm starting to love The National. I used to be indifferent to them, but was lucky to see them live in LA, and they were great live. The Music then clicked with me.
Their sound is instantly recognizable.  I think The National is music for adults starting out at 7.
Great track, thanks for playing. 
Thank you for the rare times you play some The National that's older than High Violet.
The worst act on RP, by far. {#Foot-in-mouth}
                        
                             Blame me for 'Lekmm mir on ice'
                                I'd be the lame one instate.
                            Cheap and  I'm like carting around
                                 A Cartwhelload in lemons
                                  And she does one thing.
 OHMish wrote:

Yeah, I guess he found and sticks to a niche style, which is non-expressive, bored, boring and sleep-inducing

 
I thought these guys were gonna be so important at first, with the brilliant lines like "I'll get money; I'll get funny again. Walk away now, you're gonna start a war."

But that ham-handed, annoying drummer and this far too laconic singing really turn me off. 
 undo_silence wrote:
beautiful song but somehow the singer sounds bored to me 

 
Yeah, I guess he found and sticks to a niche style, which is non-expressive, bored, boring and sleep-inducing
 blotto wrote:
Is this in English? does it come with subtitiles?

 
Oh just listen;)
beautiful song but somehow the singer sounds bored to me 
Is this in English? does it come with subtitiles?
The Boxer Rebellion to The National's Boxer: I like it.
This is one of my favorite albums.  Love that deep voice!
and their last album is so splendid!
solid 1, and I am giving credit for at least being consistantly crappy.
simply brilliant. how did they go from this to what's on their latest cd?
This group could potencially sound for 9, but they act so trivial everytime... 
I consistently like these guys more than I think that I should.
great seg from Eluvium, much as Eluvium are sucko barfo, at least The National have got somethin' to say in their Fake Empire!
the song would be better served if the singer removed the marbles from his mouth before recording.
10 -> still no 11 button? -> 10
4 years later and this song is just as painful.  no thanks, national.  {#Cowboy}
Loooooooove this song. Enjoy your Pandora, jnhashmi.


TYPE O NEGATIVE!!!!!!!!!! im falling asleep again{#Yawn}
I liked it. Not too much off the other stuff I've heard from them but still unique and not bad at all....
I have this album, but I don't really know how it is.  There's something tiring about his voice.  I don't really know what it is, but I can't make it through the entire album before either nodding off or just getting bored.  I can't say that there is any single track that I dislike much, and there are a few standouts, but I just can't sit down and listen to the whole thing.
"we're half awake.... with... fake.... implants"   {#Smile}
 Frater_Kork wrote:
Someone made the comment "Percussion happy" about a song I can't remember now.
This fits quite well here. =) 
 
NO SUCH THING... {#Drummer}

 2cats wrote:
Please play this on a regular basis!
 
bump (don't ping)


Please play this on a regular basis!
A SOLID NINE no doubt about it, these guys can play...
Someone made the comment "Percussion happy" about a song I can't remember now.
This fits quite well here. =) 
 keller1 wrote:
I like these guys ... based on the comments below, though, the live show might be an iffy proposition.
 
Saw them perform in the 2010 Glastonbury festival and they seemed pretty animated.  It was hot hot hot outside, so any activity was somewhat limited or they would have fallen victim to heatstroke.  They played a solid set and sounded good to me.
dunno much about these guys but I like this!
 flapser wrote:
This is one of my favorite songs
 

Looking forward to the new album!!
This is one of my favorite songs
Wow, this is very nice.  I look forward to hearing more of their music.
 Randomax wrote:

I am always dupped into thinking this is Crash Test Dummies........doh!


 

I meant to add that I like CTD....and I like this music!

I am always dupped into thinking this is Crash Test Dummies........doh!


This is just lovely, passionate, musical, and powerful.  Thanks, RP!
We're half awake, and bakin' pie.
 wrangler wrote:


i saw the same show in ny, and gotta say that modest mouse made the national look silly.  the national has ZERO energy - totaly yawn/bore-fest.  modest mouse brought the rock.
 
You probably got to see Johnny Marr play onstage with REM. I didn't. The Berkeley show was at the beginning of the tour, and their sets were still evolving. Dammit!

What I did see was the lead singer for Modest Mouse barking his vocals into the microphone (and occasionally a bullhorn), and acting like he really didn't give a f*ck about being there. {#Yell} {#Ass} {#Beat}

I understand the difference in taste. I really do.

The National was great in Berkeley. So was REM. But I could have done without Modest Mouse.

Johnny was great, though.{#Guitarist}

I like these guys ... based on the comments below, though, the live show might be an iffy proposition.
I love you RP. I really do. But nothing makes me switch to Pandora faster than hearing this song.
 toterola wrote:
These guys opened for REM and Modest Mouse (they sucked) at the Greek up in Berkeley last summer. We gave The National a standing "O", and they deserved it. They are a very good live band, well worth the time. {#Clap}
 

i saw the same show in ny, and gotta say that modest mouse made the national look silly.  the national has ZERO energy - totaly yawn/bore-fest.  modest mouse brought the rock.
These guys opened for REM and Modest Mouse (they sucked) at the Greek up in Berkeley last summer. We gave The National a standing "O", and they deserved it. They are a very good live band, well worth the time. {#Clap}
rtrudeau wrote:
To those who complain and moan that songs ("It's always the songs I don't like, waah, waah, waah") are "overplayed" on RP, I am cross-posting this excellent analysis originally made by listener DrLex (click here) in the comments for the Paul Simon song "Late in the Evening."

DrLex wrote:
Thanks!


This is so weird.  I left then house this morning listening to this song on my iPod.  I get to work and open up my MacBook and finish listening to the album.  I'm on a National kick so I decide to check out YouTube and watch a couple of their videos.  I leave then office, return three minutes later  and click on RP and this song begins.  Coincidence?  Perhaps not.....
I noticed this played at the Democratic Convention, right after Martin Luther King III's speech.
I like the drums on this one.
To those who complain and moan that songs ("It's always the songs I don't like, waah, waah, waah") are "overplayed" on RP, I am cross-posting this excellent analysis originally made by listener DrLex (click here) in the comments for the Paul Simon song "Late in the Evening."

DrLex wrote:

I think expecting Radio Paradise to have a playlist of 8 billion songs, or even 8 million songs, is quite a bit of lack of perspective. Do you ever come out in the real world? Even in my country where FM radio doesn't suck as hard as in the US, you'll hear the same song multiple times a day unless you'd go working, shopping and dining while wearing industrial ear protection.

Because you seem to like numbers, here's some mathematics. Suppose a station has a playlist of 10000 songs. I have no idea how many songs the active playlist of RP has, but this seems reasonable, especially in the light of the following assumption. Suppose this station is run by DJ Random, who gives every song a number between 1 to 10000 and uses a perfect random number generator to pick the next song. Suppose you listen to 120 songs this way (at an average of 4 minutes per song, that would take 8 hours). The birthday paradox says that in this case (see simulation below), there's a 50% chance that you'll hear the same song twice in this time span!

For a playlist of 50000 songs, the 50% chance of repetition is already reached at approx. 250 picks, not the expected 600.

Of course, while many radio streams work this way, on RP this is not how it's done — luckily. First of all, Bill avoids the horrible transitions that DJ Random would produce, by combining songs that actually belong together. This reduces the amount of randomness, but of course Bill has a memory and will try to avoid repeating the same song often. To minimize repetition, he would need to create an ideal sequence of all songs once, and repeat this eternally. But that would become boring too, so as a compromise and to keep managing RP tractable, Bill recycles 'stretches' of playlist, slowly mutating them and discarding them after a while. And Bill is only human, so he'll play the songs that he likes a little bit more often than others.

I wasted some of my time telling this story to show that things can be a whole lot worse, and I believe RP comes damn close to an ideal radio station. You just have to accept the fact that ideality doesn't exist and that some of the songs you don't like will be played, and repeated after a while.


to whoever is mixing that was one smooth transition very nice thanks
Just when Physicsgenius was fading into the mists of time... ScottFromWyoming wrote:
I don't usually do this, but: 30% of your song ratings are 1s. And you've rated a shitload of songs. 1400 1-rated songs? You can't be listening to the right station.
Excelsior wrote:
Ok, I've now heard it enough times that it would merit a 0.
I don't usually do this, but: 30% of your song ratings are 1s. And you've rated a shitload of songs. 1400 1-rated songs? You can't be listening to the right station.
wrangler wrote:
it's really too bad there's not a 0 ranking
Ok, I've now heard it enough times that it would merit a 0.
wrangler wrote:
it's really too bad there's not a 0 ranking
Eh, I wouldn't give this a 0. That would be reserved for truly offensive things like Dengue Fever. I think that under normal circumstances, this would be a 3, as it is a quintessential "ho-hum" song. But after being inundated by it over the last few months... gotta drop it to a 1.
it's really too bad there's not a 0 ranking Excelsior wrote:
1 -> 1 No matter how many times I hear this on RP (which is a LOT), it just doesn't change.
1 -> 1 No matter how many times I hear this on RP (which is a LOT), it just doesn't change.
7 - > 8
Meh meh murr, meh meh mhmm mhmmmmm er hmm, uhm meh meh mrmm.
Great song!!! :boohoo: