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The Glow, Pt. II

MicrophonesAudio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 25, 2001)
  • Original Release Date: 2001
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: K. Records
  • ASIN: B00005NB2Q
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #183,484 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. I Want Wind to Blow
2. The Glow Pt. 2
3. The Moon
4. Headless Horseman
5. My Roots Are Strong and Deep
6. Instrumental
7. The Mansion
8. Something 2
9. I'll Not Contain You
10. The Gleam Pt. 2
11. Map
12. You'll Be In The Air
13. I Want To Be Cold
14. I Felt My Size
15. Instrumental
16. I Felt Your Shape
17. Samurai Sword
18. My Warm Blood

Editorial Reviews

The Microphones are a one-man band in which Phil Elvrum (Old Time Relijun) makes soft, psychedelic nylon-stringed guitar jangle sound both humble and heroic. While operating in an all-analog "lo-fi" mode, in the vein of Elephant 6 collective bands such as Olivia Tremor Control, Elvrum's no wannabe. The Glow, Pt. 2, his fifth release, is his most cohesive yet. All the musical elements gel with concept (in this case, fire) and breathe with the sort of spooky, misty clarity that arguably can only be captured in an intimate, non-digital production. The solitary quality of the Microphones could be compared to that of Bright Eyes, Syd Barrett, and Graeme Jefferies on Messages for the Cakekitchen. On the soothing opener, "I Want Wind to Blow," Elvrum's plaintive whisper-singing might lull you into a dream--but the bloodcurdling commando-style distortion of the second and title track will shake your senses. The Glow, Pt. 2 is like a giant ocean liner on which the songs and all their disparate elements--stark solace with violent, beautiful, otherworldly weirdness lurking beneath--control the ebb and flow of your emotional response. --Cyndi Elliott

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another masterpiece from Phil Elvrum August 1, 2002
Format:Audio CD
It has been described as a low-fi (meaning nothing computerized was used) masterpiece, and I agree, having had the opportunity to listen to it numerous times since the day it arrived in the mail. It's definitely a concept album and all the songs flow together wonderfully. Also, it's terrific with headphones. The sonic depth is amazing. It sometimes feels as if the music enters through your ears and swims around inside you for a while, not quite able to escape.
Elvrum is not afraid of experimentation, either. Each song has its own distinctive sound. The dual acoustic-guitar sound at the front of "The Moon" has to be heard to be believed. (For the origin of that sound, listen to "The Pull"--available here for download--as well.) And his creativity will always surprise you. What seems at first like noise, after a few listens unfolds itself like a blooming bud to show you all its layers. You then come to appreciate the imagination--one would almost say "genius"--involved in this recording.
But even such a personal record cannot be done alone--not and remain faithful to its analog roots. Several of Elvrum's friends (mostly other K recording artists) stop by to help out. Most noticeable is the angelic voice of Mirah on a couple of tracks. I have become a Mirah fan--particularly "Cold Cold Water"--through my research on this album. I have, in fact, become rather more well-versed than I had expected in the music coming out of Olympia, Washington, the home of K (and the state capital, in case you didn't know.)
Sort of an Easter Egg: Make sure to listen for the tugboat sounds played underneath throughout the album (very clear during the quiet spots). It's the sonic thread that connects everything.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally January 26, 2002
Format:Audio CD
I have to admit something before I start this review. It took me FOREVER to get into this album. I tried and tried until one evening it just hit me. I do believe, as others have said, that this is a lo-fi pop record masterpiece. I'm glad I listened to it long enough before I decided to review it. Had I reviewed this album two weeks ago it might not have been the same review. Of course, there are many albums in my collection that took time to become aquainted with. Some are my favorite albums today.
The opening song titled "I Want Wind To Blow" has some very nicely recorded acoustic guitar. If you listen to it on headphones, it's even more interesting as it has been recorded to shift from one speaker to another. At first, I wasn't very comfortable with Phil's voice, but I actually think I'm quite fond of it now. The second song, "The Glow, pt. 2," is probably the biggest surprise on the album. After you've been soothed by "I Want Wind To Blow" The Microphones fuzz out to the max with a wall of guitar effects. Eventually the song turns back into the most notable style of "alternative folk rock" the album is known for. As with 95% of the album, the acoustic guitar work is just superb.
One of my favorite songs on the album would have to be "The Gleam, pt. 2." It has the most bizarre atmosphere I've heard in a while. On one hand it's very beautiful and hopeful. On the other, it's very sad and depressing. It creates a plethra of feeling. "Instrumental"(the second one) has almost the same vibe as "The Gleam, pt. 2" but is a little more uplifting. The piano in this song sends chills up my spine everytime I hear it now.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the Decade October 16, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Okay, that's a tall statement... but I haven't heard a piece of music this amazing in years. It's near impossible to explain this music; it's like being confronted by your fears while having your closest loved ones comfort you, if that helps any. It's at once some of the most intensely beautiful and frightening music ever recorded. It ranges from lullabye to caustic chaos. And there is so much space! Elvrum's songs are spread out and chopped apart so the this album feels more like a giant, sprawling, mutating piece of music rather than a collection of quirky pop songs. It seems like a world lives inside the disc, like it's an actual dream packaged for your enjoyment. I've never heard anything like this. Not even the previous Microphones releases (also great) even suggested a work of this magnitude. Of the hundreds of CDs in my collection, of the many thousands of songs and pieces of music I've heard, "The Glow pt. 2" stands out above them, rising out of the mangled memories of bands and song titles. I can't imagine a better album coming out in 2001, let alone this decade, maybe not this century. "The Glow Pt. 2" rivals every rock album ever recorded.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In Phil We Trust September 27, 2003
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
You there! Yes, you! The one with the credit card and eager appetite for adio exellence. I'm not sure how you arrived here, a mouse click away from purchasing The Glow, Pt.2, or what your personal taste in music is, but I can assure you, you've happened upon something entirely new. However, don't be surprised if what you hear seems eerily familiar. The Microphones consist of a number of extremely talented people, but at its heart, the Microphones are Phil Elvrum, a studio whiz kid and straight-up musical genius out of Anacortez, WA. The Glow, Pt. 2 is more or less an account of Phil's struggle to connect with his environment within the confines of his body. The music is generally calm and moody with occasional instrumental outbursts all layered and manually put to tape. Elvrum's lyrics paint sprawling landscapes of the Northwest hardly containable in the form of song as his voice seems to wander aimlessly, nailing each melody with intentionally impresise presision. The best I've ever heard somebody describe the music of the Microphones was, "it sounds like a guy lost in the woods." Guitar strumming moves from one ear to the other as organs meld with Elvrum's vocals, all the while a distorted fog horn recorded from a tugboat leaving the port drones off in the distance. It is immediately apparent that Elvrum has captured the world around him with The Glow, Pt.2, the struggle arises when he faces where he belongs in that world. This is not emo. This is not music to listen to while you're locked up in your room. This is music for human ears. Listen to The Glow, Pt.2 while you are locked up in your body.
And do see the Microphones/Mt.Eerie in concert if you have the chance. Whatever Elvrum decides to do, it won't dissapoint.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Lo-fi Masterpiece
I don't know how this album didn't end up on my radar a long time ago, given that it's been out a dozen years and all roads indie rock seem to lead to chief Microphone Phil Elvrum. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Nathan J. Baker
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece
How I slept on this album for so long is just beyond me. I hear shades of NMH, Daniel Johnston, even Yankee hotel foxtrot. Mind you, this album is its own beautiful beast. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Pdxluvver
1.0 out of 5 stars Dull, Long, Tedius and BORING!
I can't BELIEVE that anyone actually LIKES this music!

Album of the decade??? You've got to be kidding me! Right? Read more
Published on October 25, 2011 by John Myer
4.0 out of 5 stars Just Right
This CD was a gift to my brother for Christmas. He had expressed to me that he had a hard time finding it to purchase himself so I was more than excited that I found a seller who... Read more
Published on January 19, 2010 by Vanessa Corona
5.0 out of 5 stars happy droning.
The Lo-Fi epidemic that seems to be sweeping the world has resulted in plenty of good, but probably more bad music getting exposure recently. Read more
Published on May 28, 2008 by J. Mccarther
5.0 out of 5 stars The first great album of the 21st century
I can't believe it has been seven years since The Glow Pt. 2 was first released (and six years since I first heard it). Read more
Published on April 11, 2008 by Craig Clarke
5.0 out of 5 stars Rarely has being so lonely, cold and heartbroken felt and sounded so...
For those who missed out the first time around in 2001, The Glow, Pt. 2 is Phil Elvrum's magnum opus as far as his The Microphones project is concerned (currently he's Mount... Read more
Published on April 8, 2008 by David M. Madden
5.0 out of 5 stars Headphone-only Zone
This album only works with the magic of stereo technology. It's not a dance album or a party starter, that's for sure; but if you can find the right place to listen to it on your... Read more
Published on October 2, 2007 by Nicholas Charles Ralabate
5.0 out of 5 stars great album!!
The Microphones was one of the few bands that got to make lo-fi experimental pop sound great, with beautiful and melodies and an awesome haunting sound. Read more
Published on February 1, 2006 by nicolash
5.0 out of 5 stars Now here's a place I'd like to be
I had the album for a couple weeks and tried to listen to it as much as I could but it wasn't until just this last complete run though that I really saw this as a masterpiece, not... Read more
Published on March 15, 2005 by Sean Walt
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