Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fanfarlo: Reservoir

So I realize I haven't blogged about any music or movies since February. Well, for the most part,I haven't had anything spectacular in either category come my way. There have been some good albums, and I probably should've blogged about Other Lives' (FKA Kunek) self-titled album (available at Amazon for $5!), but for sheer laziness I didn't do it. (By the way, that album is real, and it's spectacular.)

I came across Fanfarlo in article about bands people love that nobody knows. I was instantly smitten. Instantly. Smitten. I looked up the band and found out their album hadn't released yet, but when it became available this week, I snatched it up (only $5.99 on iTunes!). I really wanted to wait for it to come out on eMusic, but I simply couldn't wait (eMusic > Amazon > iTunes).

Describing Fanfarlo's sound is surprisingly easy: it's Beirut meets Ra Ra Riot versus Arcade Fire. I actually think that's a perfect description. These guys have been around since 2006, dropping a two-song EP each year, so I don't think they consciously took bits and/or pieces from any of the abovementioned bands (plus, Fanfarlo's first EP came out before Beirut and Ra Ra Riot debuted). However, even if Fanfarlo totally stole their sound from those bands (which, again, I don't think they did), I still wouldn't care because those are somewhat disparate sounds and they do such a great job melding them into one sound.

The lyrics are fun, playful, and downright simple at times, but it contrasts well with the complex melodies of--get this--violin, keyboard, mandolin, saw (SAW!), bass, banjo, trumpet, glockenspeil, saxophone, clarinet, and guitar. Seriously! The lyrics can also be sufficiently ambiguous, which meshes perfectly with the musical melancholia that emerges in songs like "Comets" and "If It Is Growing."

Blurb: A great mixture of the sounds of a few different bands. These guys are my new favorite.
Final Grade: A

There's no video for my favorite song ("The Walls are Coming Down," which is a dead ringer for a Zach Condon production), so here are songs for which videos are available. Enjoy (and then go buy the album!):

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