As songs continue to leak off The National's apparently outstanding next record, High Violet, we continue to see the darker side of the band. On the lush and dank, "I'm Afraid Of Everyone," Berninger is as restrained and smooth as the arrangement, which unravels like a wheel of rich and expensive fabric. Beginning as a low-key meditation on the nervousa of darker corners, by the end the drums are thudding in a threatening circle overhead while guitar feedback and fuzz hum. Meaning what he says, Berninger capitulates in the middle, saying "I don't have the drugs to sort it out." Perhaps the finest moment is a vocal-build, passing for a bridge, that involves layers and layers of Berninger repeating the same phrase, "Your voice is swallowing my soul" until "I'm Afraid Of Everyone" flushes and breathes with life. Or is it death? Appropriately, it all sounds like drowning in the dark.
Listen :: The National - "I'm Afraid Of Everyone"