Most people know of the weakerthans because the lead singer was at one time in Propagandhi. But don't be misled. Their style is distinctly their own. I was a huge fan of Left And Leaving, The Weakerthans prior effort, and a lot of the aspects which made that album so good are present on this one as well. Namely, the lyrics are really poetic and good, the guitar is laid back and folksy, and the whole cd makes me sit down and think while I listen to it. I can't stress how good the lyrics are overall. They call up so many pictures and memories with their subtle use of metaphor and imagery. It has the feel of a lot of good folk music, which will not only tell a story, but put you within the story and make you feel like every word has an impact on your life. This album is much more polished than the other two were in recording quality, which for me was a little bit of a let down. I liked the gritty feel to the music, but this album makes up for that loss. They also try some experimentation, with some horns on the first track "(Manifest)" and a decidedly country feel on the title track "Reconstruction Site." It even has a song with an almost ska feel, namely "Our Retired Explorer." There is also a song with electronic instrumentation, a la Radiohead's Amnesiac cd, and a blues song "A New Name for Everything." I was incredibly impressed with the maturity and experimentation on this album. They were willing to pull from everything and still remained recognizably their own style. Excellent cd that I recommend furiously.
Reviewed by: Kyle