The Manchester Orchestra formed in 2004 in the midst of the pop-punk and emo boom of the 2000s. With Andy Hull's tender, emotionally honest songwriting at the helm, they found their way out of their unlikely hometown of Atlanta to with gritty rock on the harder end of the spectrum, which also wasn't afraid to get slow and painful at times. Over the years, their music has improved in production value, becoming a little more experimental, slower, and more conscious.
Manchester Orchestra has released six studio albums, the most recent being the acclaimed 2017 release.A black mile to the surface🇧🇷 Each of their albums was notable in its own right, however.A black mile to the surfaceconsidered the band's best album by many fans, including myself. We all know how rare it is for a band to really improve with age, but Manchester Orchestra has managed so far, with the possible exception of 2013.deal with, which is a decent album, but probably the worst overall, and not necessarily because of the songs, but because of the production and arrangement.
Manchester Orchestra's first two albums, 2007I'm like a virgin who lost a childe 2009everything means nothingremain staples in their catalog, but their sound has evolved enough over the years to incorporate the heavier, punk-influenced elements of both albums in very melodic and thoughtful ways. 2011simple mathit was their first album to really strike that balance and the production is impeccable, so they took it off a bit.A black mile to the surfaceeven had a radio hit on the lead single "The Gold", which reached No. 1 on the Billboard Adult Alternative chart.
These days, the Manchester Orchestra is becoming a much bigger entity than just a band. They have their own record label.Favorite Gentlemen's Discs, which includes a list of bands in their circle, beloweveryone outand more. Andy Hull and his team are involved in a number of side projects, includingbad booksfeaturing Kevin Devine and Andy's solo projectNow, great captain!.
Manchester Orchestra has a lot of great songs, but we've narrowed them down to 10 that we think are the best, with one exception that you'll learn about later. Check out our list of the top 10 Manchester Orchestra songs below.
10. „Pensacola“ (simple math, 2011)
You can hardly go wrong anywheresimple math, but "Pensacola" stands out in particular for being so great to see live. A staple of live Manchester Orchestra setlists, this song always, always has fans screaming along with the chorus, creating an epic and energetic experience. “My daughter, she hardly eats / she hardly sleeps / she hardly speaks!” They press on in the studio recording, dropping instruments during the bridge to an acapella section, and fans certainly oblige.
9. "Shake It" (everything means nothing, 2009)
"Shake It Out" vem deeverything means nothing, Manchester Orchestra's heaviest album, the second in their discography. This is the record that got her on tour with Brand New in 2009. "Shake It Out" is one of the band's loudest, most propulsive songs, but with a nice balance that slows things down and allows you and the band to catch a breath before it hits. increase energy again. It's reminiscent of things they did on later albums, likeA black mile to the surface.
8. "I can feel heat" (everything means nothing, 2009)
"I Can Feel A Hot One" is the first Manchester Orchestra slow song to make this list. One of the band's most popular songs from the early days, it features that slow, disjointed guitar line that takes Andy's vocals through a cerebral history of finding himself burned out by extensive touring, leading him to have a nightmare about the death of your woman. Through it all, Andy finds a thread of beauty and weaves an entire song around it in a way that can hit you right in the heart if he catches you in the right mood.
7. "The gold" (A black mile to the surface, 2017)
It's usually a bad sign to hear one of your favorite bands on the radio, but with the Manchester Orchestra it was more like I was proud of them and the wider audience for actually picking good music to enjoy. "The Gold" is certainly the radio hit, but it's a really good song and deserves to be a radio hit. It's very accessible, yet risque enough to scratch that emotional rock itch that many Manchester Orchestra fans crave. It was released as the first single fromA black mile to the surface, and gave us an excellent preview of an equally excellent album.
6. “Simple Math” (simple math, 2011)
Ah, Simple Math, the Manchester Orchestra's gateway drug for many people in 2011, when the album of the same name was released. As I mentioned, this whole album is fantastic, as are the other Manchester Orchestra albums, but there is a special element to “Simple Math”. The song builds and builds, with increasingly complex and noisy fiddles and musical layers, leading to a cathartic break at the end. The whole thing will get you and you can even hum the chorus later.
5. "Girl Haven" (HAVE HOPE, 2014)
"Girl Harbor" is a bit of a sleeper in the Manchester Orchestra catalogue. Two versions of the song were released, first in 2013deal with,and then to 2014HAVE HOPE,which contains all the songs fromdeal withtransformed into a quieter, more atmospheric arrangement. The album remains a must-read for me in times of quiet reflection, and the song "Girl Harbor" is just as emotionally relatable and touching. I prefer thoseHAVE HOPEversion of this song, as do most of the other songs on this double album, and I especially like Andy's passionate vocals when he sings "I know your mistakes / I know how you copy them / I don't want nothing to do with you no more". It's so cathartic and stands as one of the strongest musical moments in the Manchester Orchestra's entire arsenal.
4. "The River" (everything means nothing, 2009)
Another song that makes this list due to heavy construction is "The River", a live staple for the band and one of theeverything means nothingSongs that have best stood the test of time. This finds its strength in the guitar playing of Robert McDowell, who joined the band prior to these recording sessions and helped take the band's sound to the next level. "The River" is a prime example of the Manchester Orchestra's sound as it incorporates elements of everything they do musically, from melodic vocals to heavy guitars and cathartic breaks, "The River" has it all.
3. "Colly Strings" (I'm like a virgin who lost a child, 2007)
Colly Strings is the soulful version of the Manchester Orchestra's debut album,I'm like a virgin who lost a child🇧🇷 The lyrics and vocals are the real strength here, as Andy tells the emotional story of a broken relationship. This one also starts off slow and atmospheric and gets more intense as Andy progresses through the story, his vocals also increasing in volume. That moment when the veil lifts and the electric guitars kick into gear is a fantastic way to end their debut album with a bang, and it gives this song lasting strength in an increasingly impressive discography.
2. "Where have you been?"(I'm like a virgin who lost a child, 2007)
It was a close battle between "Colly Strings" and "Where Have You Been?" for second place, but had to give it to Where Have You Been? in the way it reminds me of Brand New. The melodic guitar in the intro reminds me a lot of "Jesus Christ" by Brand NewThe devil and God rage in me, and since that record was released in 2006, it's reasonable to assume that there was a significant influence exerted there. "Where have you been?" it also has religious themes, with lyrics questioning the presence of God in Andy's life. Jesse Lacey from Brand New even played live with the Manchester Orchestra on this song back in 2007. Check it outhere.
1. „The Alien“ / „The Sunshine“ / „The Grocery“ (A black mile to the surface, 2017)
For number one on our list of the best Manchester Orchestra songs, I've decided to make an exception and highlight the three song sequences of "The Alien", "The Sunshine" and "The Grocery" from their latest LPA black mile to the surface🇧🇷 The album's strength is rounded off, but what really takes it to the next level and gives it so much appeal are the transitions between songs. We haven't fully talkedGrateful Dead-LevelTransitions here, but the combination of these three songs in the middle of the album is very close, and it's certainly best heard as if they were one long song. The Manchester Orchestra also plays "The Alien", "The Sunshine" and "The Grocery" live side by side, and they actually play these transitions on stage live.
"The Alien" begins slow and atmospheric, and lyrically tells the story of someone who feels like an outsider in the world, who has suicidal thoughts and decides to leave his family behind. It then moves on to the short, upbeat, bright 'The Sunshine' before moving on to the heavier 'The Grocery', which is about someone who walks into a grocery store and shoots the entire store. This person is probably the same person from "The Alien", who comes full circle in a darkly poetic way.
This is likely the direction the Manchester Orchestra will continue to take as its career continues to expand. They really took it to the next level.A black mile to the surfaceand given that this album was released over three years ago, it's safe to assume that we'll be hearing new music from them in the not-too-distant future. At this point I have to go back and update this list and make some tough decisions on what to cut. Now enjoy!