Neutral Milk Hotel is a perfect collaboration of the weird and that which every human heart understands and needs. Simple acoustic chords somehow manage not to become at all stale, probably benefited by clever and memorable melodies and the other elements Neutral Milk Hotel uses throughout. The band has full-time brass people, not session musicians, mixes in strangely filthy electric guitars and bass, driving drums, and random eccentric instrumentations. One song will be quick and to the point, another will be slow and thoughtful. One song will slide past with almost meaningless lyrics and an energetic feel, another (in fact, most) are filled with lyrics that tell all the facets of a story at once - not just the usual "I love you" and "my father died" but all the things that happen at every stage in life, the things large and small that make life meaningful and wondrous.
Perhaps the reason I've delayed hunting down any more of their albums is the fact that I don't feel like I'm missing anything from this album - it continues to please and fulfill. I have no doubt that I will continue to cherish this already ten-year-old record for years and decades to come. Well-suited for crying and singing and romance and hurting and loving. And just living. I don't think I would have understood it 5 years ago, but I don't think I'll ever feel even a temptation to get rid of it.