The Fiery Furnaces: I'm Going Away (Thrill Jockey) 

The Friedbergers—the arch, Tenenbaums-esque brother-and-sister duo—are back with a very good seventh album.

If you've ever been on the fence about the band's experimental excess, but enjoyed their more-cohesive moments, you'll be pleased by I'm Going Away. It's a listener-friendly album that doesn't stretch the limits of credulity like Blueberry Boat's abstractions or the spoken-word strangeness of 2005's Rehearsing My Choir.

Here, the band simply delivers the goods: ramshackle prog-pop that affects a tone both effectively summer-y and creepy. It's a weird emotional cue that few other bands manage to strike, but the Furnaces have mastered it.

As evidence, I'll refer you to tracks like "Staring at the Steeple," with its pyrotechnic drumming and spook-house organ riffs, and the kitschy shuffle-beat on "Charmaine Champagne." "Ray Bouvier" has all the wistful triumph of an end-of-high-school film's prom sequence, when the romantic leads share a dance before the credits roll.

"Lost at Sea" is the album's gentlest moment, with Eleanor cooing "Baby I'm ... / Maybe I'm not me." That lyrical ellipsis delivers all of the inherent drama one might expect, and reminds us how sophisticated the Furnaces have become at staging that drama by using what is left out. It's a reminder that the band is capable of restraint and subtlety—a nice counterpoint to their beatnik, stream-of-consciousness tendency to overload songs with language. That's still in evidence on I'm Going Away, but it's less off-putting now that we've seen them strike so many varying poses.

More by Sean Bottai


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

The Range

Get Your Spooks On for a Halloweekend at Hotel Congress

In the Flesh: Howe Gelb's 60th B-day Bash at the Rialto Theater

Song of the Day: 'Cosmic Love Song No. 23' by Louise Le Hir

More »

Latest in Rhythm & Views

  • Rhythm & Views

    American Monoxide “In Flight Mode” (People In A Position To Know)
    • Dec 18, 2014
  • Rhythm & Views

    Wight Lhite “Beyond the Satellites” (Paisley Shirt Records)
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Noise Annoys

    Mute Swan and the Curse of Local Hype
    • Oct 20, 2016
  • Honky Tonk Girl

    How this Tucson 19-year-old might trip the country electric
    • Sep 29, 2016
  • More »

Facebook Activity

© 2016 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation