- Jul 15, 2007
I'm more of a Toni Braxton fan.
Is there a bit of a draft in here?
Is there a bit of a draft in here?
If that's you, Jen, I thought the article was good, but I felt like you were reaching for something almost profound in it but didn't quite get there. It's no insult, I like your radio stuff and when I met you in person that time you seemed soundA superficial band doesn’t merit more insight, which was kind of the point. Or would you prefer to have that explained over twenty pages?
Jesus dude, go for a walk, it’s a gig review. Love Jen.If that's you, Jen, I thought the article was good, but I felt like you were reaching for something almost profound in it but didn't quite get there. It's no insult, I like your radio stuff and when I met you in person that time you seemed sound
@Lili Marlene SOMEONE HACKED YOUR ACCOUNTOk, have now listened to the whole thing, there's a lot more than Joy Division-y stuff on there. Pleasantly surprised. I miss the big obvious choruses of the first album but it's decent! Yer mans accent still sounds phony and there's some dodgy lyrics but, well, so be it. Gwan the lads.
she wrote one other reviewAhaha, its like this was written purposely to wind up Irish Karl Marx Mug Twitter
Heady, funny, and fearless, the Dublin band’s second album is a maudlin and manic triumph, a horror movie shot as comedy, equal parts future-shocked and handcuffed to history.pitchfork.com
Slinking seeming fully-formed from Dublin’s working-class neighborhood The Liberties, the five-piece established themselves as bona fide inheritors of a centuries-long socialist-bohemian tradition
The long-running Dublin band’s 11th album is a distillation of their manifold strengths, largely comprised of pastoral accounts of Irish beauty curdling into something coarser and sadder.
Dublin's durably excellent Fontaines D.C. have existed long enough to run the gamut from insurgent roots-rock heroes to their current stature as pantheonic middle-age warhorses, all without ever changing much about their Poco-meets-the-Faces first principles. More than three decades from their debut, A Hero's Death, the band’s 11th studio album, is a distillation of their manifold strengths, executed with the subtle precision of a one-time power pitcher who now gets by on off-speed stuff and guile.
A Hero's Death is largely comprised of pastoral, shopworn accounts of Irish beauty curdling into something coarser and sadder, the personal indignities of aging merging with the endless discouragements of our cultural and political moment. The haunting ballad “Homecoming” penned by founding member and functional bandleader Liberties Larry, strikes a fatalistic note in an opening couplet that could apply to everything from climate change to encroaching mortality: “Yeah, the room is closing in/The air is getting thicker/It’s hard for me to breathe.” Elsewhere, “Ruby,” written and sung by keyboardist Liberties Liam, is a piano-based character sketch evoking Van Morrison’s Veedon Fleece by way of Sandy Denny’s enchanted folk, an opulent melody suffused with last-day-of-Summer melancholy.
The number of different voices featured on A Hero's Death reflects the more collaborative measures taken during Fontaines D.C.’s writing process, with all four members taking on lead vocal duties at different points over the course of the LP’s 12 tracks. It’s a calculated risk that winds up working, suggesting something like the Byrds’ brilliantly successful full-scale reinvention Sweetheart of the Rodeo or even the Lindsay and Stevie version of Fleetwood Mac. When the seething Grotberg composition “Across My Field” gives way to the insouciant disco of Liberties Larry and drummer Liberties Leo “Little Victories”, it has the character of a quiet evening at home that suddenly turns into a debauched shore leave weekend.
One Fontaines D.C. anomaly is their periodic weakness for ersatz chamber music taken to unrewarding ends. On A Hero's Death it appears in the form of the ponderous four-and-a-half-minute “Illuminate”, a song apparently dedicated to making monkeys of Trump supporters while simultaneously making a very thin, or at least elliptical case against him. Much better is Liberties Luke's unambiguous “All The Young Dudes” sequel “Society Pages,” a psychedelic public service announcement that asks the ultimate litmus question: “Are you here/For all the young queers?”
While the prevailing mood of A Hero's Death is world-weary resignation, sprightly tracks like the Burrito Brothers-style scarlet woman homage “Bitter Pill” and the exhilarating Radio City-inspired power trash of “Dogtown Days” go some lengths to demonstrate that Fontaines D.C. remain rough and ready as ever. Long purveyors of old-soul music, they've now persevered long enough to render their timeless melodies with the finely-honed perspective of genuine old souls. A Hero's Death is a battle-scarred but unbroken collection, worthy of being filed alongside venerable mid-career milestones like Wildflowers and Time Out of Mind. Once counted as standard-bearers for the prefabricated genre known as "Irishana,” Fontaines D.C.’s mosaic of woozy memory and wooly panache now comprises a version of Irish music all their own, stretching out endlessly like a Midwestern summer's night.
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