The National were awarded a GRAMMY award for Best Alternative Music Album category for their 2017 release Sleep Well Beast during The Recording Academy® 60th annual GRAMMY® Awards show. While they were nominated in the same category for their last album, Trouble Will Find Me, this is the band’s first win. Sleep Well Beast, with designers Luke Hayman and Andrea Trabucco-Campos of Pentagram, also received a nomination for Best Recording Package.
Guitarist and producer Aaron Dessner had this to say about the win:
“We are honored and grateful to be recognized by the Recording Academy. The National started 19 years ago and has grown into a large extended family and community of artistic collaborators. This award is for our whole family and everyone who has helped us and listened along the way. We could never have accomplished what we have just the five of us. We also want to recognize all the incredible music that was not nominated and awarded this year, and every year. The National lived in the shadows for many years, outside the spotlight of commercial success and accolades. There is so much vital and important art and music being made in every corner, whether it’s put up on a pedestal at year end or not. Thank you.”
The band is currently on tour with newly announced North American dates listed below.
The National have established themselves as mainstays of arenas and festivals with sold-out performances and headlining slots around the world. With the release of Sleep Well Beast, The National achieved their highest chart position in the US to date, coming in at #2 on the Billboard Top 200. In addition they scored #1’s in the UK, Ireland, Portugal and Canada. The band received their highest chart position ever in a total of eleven countries. The National also claimed their first #1 at commercial radio on the Triple-A radio chart with “The System Only Dreams in Total Darkness.” The songs off Sleep Well Beast are instantly recognizable as The National, but their sound has evolved and expanded. Sleep Well Beast is currently gracing best of 2017 lists around the globe. “It was important that we genuinely explore new territory and risk falling on our faces, or not make a record at all,” explains Aaron Dessner. “This album feels complete to me.”
What critics are saying about Sleep Well Beast:
“The National’s upcoming full-length, Sleep Well Beast, is shaping up to be the best album the band has done.” – NPR
“Elegant melancholia isn’t enough for the National anymore. On its seventh album, Sleep Well Beast, its new songs have more rhythmic ferment and melodic crosscurrents; they translate emotional complexity into musical counterpoint.” – New York Times
“This seventh record from the aughts’ indie superstars promises a feast of grandiose rock.” – New York Magazine
“Over the past 16 years this veteran indie quintet has quietly become one of the biggest bands in the country, and with their seventh album they’ve achieved the rare feat of releasing one of their best – if not the best – collection to date.” – Variety
“On Sleep Well Beast, the usual National ingredients are in place-cryptic imagery, brooding baritone, all-consuming melancholy-accompanied by an increasing interest in electronic rhythms and textures. ” – Newsweek
“The indie band’s seventh LP lives up to their acclaim as one of the nation’s best, with sullen Matt Berninger’s sullen croon turning midtempo ballads like ‘Nobody Else Will Be There’ into full-blow anthems. And the guitar work of brothers Aaron and Bryce Dessner impresses more than ever, particularly on the squalling ‘Turtleneck.'” – People Magazine
“The National is back when we need them most…on their sonically expansive seventh outing, [they] have come roaring back with their most ambitious, urgent album yet.” – USA Today
“Sleep Well Beast is what it is: an emotional battlefield, beautifully drawn, familiar and true. Berninger voices a panicked, depressive insomniac who might be any of us, trying to hold it together while everything falls apart.” – Rolling Stone
June 1 – Barcelona, Spain – Primavera Sound Festival