The Carpenter

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Christopher Monger
The Carpenter, the sixth studio album (and second with producer Rick Rubin) from North Carolina's Avett Brothers, is as amiable, quaint, mischievous, sad, and disarmingly sincere as its predecessor, landing somewhere between the easy, late summer nostalgia of Ron Sexsmith, the wise and wounded defiance of the Band, and the harmony-laden, pop-laced melancholy of the Jayhawks. Chillier and less piano-heavy than 2009's I and Love and You, The Carpenter feels like both an exorcism and a benediction, bringing down the magnifying glass on the myriad complexities of death while maintaining an unwavering sense of optimism, a delicate balance that's best exemplified on ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Christopher Monger
The Carpenter, the sixth studio album (and second with producer Rick Rubin) from North Carolina's Avett Brothers, is as amiable, quaint, mischievous, sad, and disarmingly sincere as its predecessor, landing somewhere between the easy, late summer nostalgia of Ron Sexsmith, the wise and wounded defiance of the Band, and the harmony-laden, pop-laced melancholy of the Jayhawks. Chillier and less piano-heavy than 2009's I and Love and You, The Carpenter feels like both an exorcism and a benediction, bringing down the magnifying glass on the myriad complexities of death while maintaining an unwavering sense of optimism, a delicate balance that's best exemplified on the lovely opener "The Once and Future Carpenter," a dusty, sprawling, yet meticulously crafted '70s folk-rock stunner that's built around the notion that "If I live the life I'm given I won't be scared to die." That adherence to maverick decency permeates much of the album, dutifully utilizing the outlaw country archetype of the weary traveler in search of an honest woman and a respite from the spiritual grind of the open road. Scott and Seth Avett's glassy tenors may not harbor the grit and grime of Waylon Jennings or Townes Van Zandt, but set piece ballads like the bittersweet "February Seven" and "Winter in My Heart," the latter of which is pure Red Headed Stranger-era Willie Nelson with a bigger arsenal of chords, ache with the kind of weary, pre-dawn fervor that usually accompanies a wanderlust binge. It's not all tears and beers though, as evidenced by more propulsive cuts like the bouncy, banjo-led "Live and Die," "I Never Knew You," a skiffle-soaked takedown of an ex-lover, replete with stereo-panned Beatles harmonies, and the left-field, feedback-drenched art rocker "Paul Newman vs. the Demons," but it's the quieter moments that really resonate, despite what the group's notoriously kinetic live shows may suggest. At its heart, which is most definitely on its sleeve, The Carpenter is a relatively simple, country-folk record, albeit one with a college degree, and when it connects it hits that sweet spot between joy and despair that has served as the target for many a dusty brimmed singer/songwriter over the years. The Avett Brothers aren't rewriting the book, they're just translating it for a new generation.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/11/2012
  • Label: American Recordings
  • UPC: 602537127863
  • Catalog Number: 001732802
  • Sales rank: 22,766

Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Avett Brothers Primary Artist
Benmont Tench Organ, Piano, Harmonium, Mellotron
Lenny Castro Percussion
Geoff Nudell Bass Clarinet
Chad Smith Drums
Ed Roth Piano
Ryan Hewitt Percussion
Steve Nistor Drums
Doug Wamble Slide Guitar
Scott Avett Acoustic Guitar, Banjo, Piano, Vocals, Background Vocals
Seth Avett Organ, Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Electric Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals
Dana Nielsen Chimes
Blake Mills Electric Guitar
April Cap Oboe
Bob Crawford Electric Bass, Background Vocals, Upright Bass
Joe Kwon Cello
Hattie Webb Background Vocals
Jacob Edwards Percussion, Drums
Timothy Seth Avett Group Member
Scott Yancey Avett Group Member
Robert William Crawford Jr. Group Member
Charlotte Webb Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Rick Rubin Producer
Dave Collins Mastering
Ryan Hewitt Engineer
Tucker Martine Engineer
Jon Ashley Recording Assistant
The Avett Brothers Composer
Scott Avett Concept
Seth Avett Concept
Martin Kvamme Graphic Design, Layout
Julian Dreyer Recording Assistant
Evan Hill Recording Assistant
Jake Sinclair Engineer
Evan Bradford Recording Assistant
Dolphus Ramseur Management
Jordan Silva Recording Assistant
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