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30 Year Low + The Final Remarks of the Legendary Malcontent

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30 Year Low + The Final Remarks of the Legendary Malcontent album cover
Disc 1 of 2
01
Since I Came
5:14
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02
Aspect of an Old Maid (featuring Okkervil River's Will Sheff)
3:32
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03
31 Candles
2:46
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04
I Lost My Taste
5:12
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05
Love on Parade
4:30
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06
Stepping on My Heels
2:29
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Thirty Year Low
3:08
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08
Tell it to the Raven
3:03
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Disc 2 of 2
01
Anything Goes
2:10
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02
It Helps to Leave the House
2:46
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03
Fleur de Lie (Live)
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04
Withered and Died
2:53
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05
Tougher Than the Rest
3:27
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06
Go Shopping
3:39
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Now or Never or Later (Original Demo)
3:07
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Packs of Three
3:34
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09
Tax Me
4:11
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It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry
3:35
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11
I Am Small
2:37
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12
Golden Boy (Live)
2:42
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13
The Likely Nominee
4:19
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14
Mysterious in Black (Live)
4:57
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15
Mike T. Interlude
1:15
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Over the Hill
2:46
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Angry Crafts
2:08
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18
Metro Pictures (Alternate Take)
4:50
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Album Information

Total Tracks: 26   Total Length: 87:39

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Wondering Sound

Review 41

Tizzy Asher

Contributor

04.22.11
The Mendoza Line, 30 Year Low + The Final Remarks of the Legendary Malcontent
2007 | Label: Glurp Records / The Orchard

Divorce hurts. You can hear it cracking Shannon McArdle's voice as she sings, “It's time we rode in a separate car, stayed in our own place” during “Stepping on My Heels,” on 30 Year Low. Whether or not it's what she intends, McArdle is announcing the dissolution of both the romantic and artistic partnership between her and Mendoza Line guitarist Timothy Bracy.

Many songwriters have recorded “divorce albums” — Dylan's Blood on the Tracks and Bruce… read more »

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Pretty good

Jsquared91

Aspece of an old maid is probably the strongest, but i like the tension of the band's own male lead singer's version (available as an outtake on their website) over the one with Will Sheff, but its still really great and rockin. I dont own the rest of the album, but Since I Came, 30 Year Low, 31 candles and Stepping on my heels all are great. Check out Catch a collapsing star from Full of Light for another gem

user avatar

A great band's sad farewell

MatthewB

I find it genuinely depressing that I learned about the Mendoza Line only a year or so before its dissolution. "30 Year Low" probably isn't the best introduction -- go for "Fortune" and "Full of Light..." first -- but there are terrific songs, mostly here by Shannon McArdle. Try the fierce rave-up "31 Candles" and gorgeous "Tell It to the Raven," balanced with the goofy "Tax Me."

user avatar

High Quality Music

Antidale

This album starts out so well. "Since I Came" has a sad, slow feeling like Mojave 3's "Love Songs on the Radio," and "31 Candles" absolutely rollicks across my eardrums. After the continued excellence of the first three songs, I found the overly Dylan-esque vocals of "I Lost My Taste" and "Love on Parade" off putting. "30 Year Low" lives up to the borrowed Dylan stylings and works well as an anchor in the last three songs on the disc.

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My new <3

trytobemorealive

This album is such an entertaining feast of heartbreak and sexual sniping that it almost makes my head explode at how good it is. It's the album that I'm telling anyone who'll listen they should go out and buy. Don't listen to that other guy who only sampled a few tracks... At least download all of disc one... It's only 8 downloads, and it's probably the most consistent full album that's gone on here recently.

They Say All Music Guide

Brooklyn’s the Mendoza Line have been poised at the brink of a precipice throughout their ten-year existence. 2000′s masterful We’re All in This Alone was a thrust and parry exchange between the principal combatants, husband and wife Timothy Bracy and Shannon McArdle, and the band’s last effort, 2005′s Full of Light and Full of Fire, seemed to foreshadow relational failure with a fatalistic shrug. So it should come as no great surprise that with 30 Year Low, the husband-and-wife duo, and the existence of the band itself, go hurtling over the edge of the cliff. Divorce albums, of course, have always constituted their own hypercharged subgenre, with Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks and Richard & Linda Thompson’s Shoot Out the Lights at the head of the sadsack class. You can slot 30 Year Low just slightly below those masterpieces. While Bracy tends to couch his sorrow and self-loathing in poetic sentiments and alt country rambles, McArdle goes straight for the rock & roll jugular, and the contrasting styles create the tension that fuels this album. Bracy’s Dylanesque rasp chronicles the dissolution of the couples’ marriage on the disquieting ballad “Love on Parole,” while the title track finds him employing an extended marriage-as-stock-market metaphor on a Bakersfield lope that could have originated with Merle Haggard or Buck Owens. Only his “I’ve Lost My Taste,” which verges on mush-mouthed Dylan parody, fails to connect. If anything, McArdle is even more of a revelation. “Stepping on My Heels” is a lovely, disquieting meditation on aging and the chew ‘em up and spit ‘em out nature of the music industry. And “31 Candles” is a great, raging mess of snarling guitars, snarky commentary, and bitterness and recrimination, a cathartic middle finger to a marriage that was, and is no more. It’s clear evidence that these folks won’t be making music together anytime soon. And that’s a shame. Aside from the relational crash and burn, which is reason enough to mourn, it’s abundantly clear that we’ve lost a very talented band. The accompanying odds & sods collection, Final Reflections of the Legendary Malcontent, will probably be of interest only to hardcore fans and completists. Compiling B-sides, live versions of previously released studio tracks, a few choice covers (Linda Thompson’s exquisite “Withered and Died,” Bruce Springsteen’s “Tougher Than the Rest”), and the kind of flaccid studio noodling that should have never seen the light of day, it’s the perfect argument for the “Next” button on your CD player or iPod. The real action here is on 30 Year Low, and it’s fast and most decidedly furious. Like the best divorce albums, it offers sadness, pathos, and the electric thrill of great music forged in the crucible of pain. – Andy Whitman

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