Top 100 Albums of the Decade: #59 The Microphones - The Glow Pt. 2


Top 100 Albums of the Decade list will be posted over the course of 100 days. On September 23rd, we will post one album and continue every day until December 31st, when we will unveil our #1 album of the decade!

Please read our introduction to learn about our nominating and ordering process.

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#59 The Microphones - The Glow Pt. 2

Through all of his name-changes and experimental tangents, The Glow Pt. 2 will always be Phil Elverum's magnum opus. Under The Microphones moniker, Elverum managed to seamlessly unite opposing forces, creating one of the top albums of the decade. It had an oversaturated lo-fi sound, yet one that flawlessly accented Elverum's innocent voice and words. At its heart, it was a bedroom recording, but rested beneath a powerful, overarching presence that took the form of intensely imaginative lyrics or dominating walls of sound.

The Glow Pt. 2 begins as an acoustic, basement jam with harmonizing nylon strings and foot-tapping percussion. An accordion clouds in an atmosphere for a bit. Then we hear a brief moment of clarity until pianos and static production scrape and crackle, bringing the song to a close. It transforms itself from something intimate to something grand, which is a common theme throughout the album. The title track follows this them, but in the reverse direction. What begins as a percussive wall of sound becomes a dark, sparse song, mostly carried by Elverum's fragile voice and revealing imagery. The album continues to rise and fall like crashing waves. Each song is an in-depth look into Elverum's soul, a glimpse into his internal battles brought on by his perception of the external world. It is Elverum's masterpiece.

Check back tomorrow for the next album! To see the full list of the Top 100 Albums of the Decade, click here.

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