Thursday, May 31, 2007

Handsome Furs - Plague Park - Raw Steel Album Review

Artist: Handsome Furs
Album: Plague Park
Label: Polydor
Rating: B+

Handsome Furs consists of Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade) and his fiancée, Alexei Perry. This is their first album, entitled Plague Park. Boeckner has honed in on his voice, instrumentation, lyrics and has added a few new electronic sounds. Handsome Furs achieve what many bands these days are attempting, maybe they do so well because Boeckner was apart of writing those rules with Wolf Parade.

Listening to Wolf Parades Apologies For The Queen Mary, it’s hard to differentiate between Spencer Krug and Boeckner. Here, it is now revealed as to who is responsible for what sounds. Boeckner reminds us of the unforgettable sporatic keyboards, the lengthy bass synths, and song structure in general.

There are times where their songs can cause a loss of attention, never to redeem themselves, although, power and intensity remain driving factors throughout the album and make for some spine tingling moments. Tell that to Sufjan Stevens.

Lyrically, ‘ghosts, homes and towns’ remain a staple. The lyrics when looked at by themselves create a sense of strong pessimism but only through eyes that have experienced, like those of Boekner.

Notes act as pigeons, and Boeckner shoots/sings each one to pieces with laser blue-blocker glasses equiped. The album dies down near the end, but with as strong an effort given, Handsome Furs deserve much praise.

-Raw Steel


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