September 14, 2010

all that furr

apologies for being lazy. lots of new music coming in from good friends all around. and that indie sound has been doing the listening. among the piles of music was Blitzen Trapper's new album Destroyer of the Void. that indie sound still has a throbbing toe after stubbing it while jumping around, album clutched tightly to self, on discovery of it.

most of us in the indie world think no end of Blitzen Trapper. however, after a first listen that indie sounds feels that their new album is a bit shy of that big big applause we had given Furr - the fourth album from this Portland sextet. 

Furr was all things good in life. their earnest-to-god, poetic, late-nineties americana style sets them apart from all other bands. they write music beautifully, understand harmony better than most, and have their feet are firmly planted on green terra firma. Furr is an intimate, poignant, no-fuss album - an album you know you'll go back to years later. it's for keeps. fyi: for this album, Earley wrote and recorded many of the songs on an old piano (a new element for the band) missing a few of its teeth, which mysteriously 'appeared in the hallway' of where they were recording. Their label says, 'The beast has gone away to the landfill now, but you can still hear the clacking and clattering of its rickety skeleton in songs like "Not Your Lover" and "Echo".'

song picks would include 'Furr', a song for a yellow summer's day. 'Black River Killer' - a dusty, outlaw song about murder is that indie sound's favourite. 'Love U' with its big electric guitars and strong vocals takes me off my feet. Then, there are 'Lady on the Water' and 'Not your Lover' - both lyrical, folksy numbers. and with its opener being called 'Sleepy time in the Western World', why wouldn't you want to give it the listen?

smarties: blitzen in german means 'lightning', and one of santa's reindeer is also called that (the other is 'donner' or dondor, i.e. thunder). 

the sound:
Eric Earley: vocals, guitar, keyboards
Erik Menteer: guitar, keyboards
Brian Koch: drums, vocals
Marty Marquis: guitar, keyboards, vocals
Michael VanPelt: bass
Drew Laughery: keyboards