Five reasons to go see the Fiery Furnaces at the Grey Eagle Tuesday night:
No. 1: The new album from Eleanor and Matt Friedberger, I’m Going Away, is punchy and dramatic and witty and fun. One critic says it sounds like a collection of drunken singalongs (also: “Eleanor’s vocal cadences are as distinct and unmistakable as anyone in contemporary pop this side of Snoop Dogg and Lil’ Wayne”). One critic said it sounded like TV theme songs. The songs are somewhat shorter, for whatever that’s worth. I listened to it twice and found myself singing the songs while crossing the street, or at the grocery store. But I still hum “Chris Michaels” and “Paw Paw Tree.”
Here’s what the band says about it:
“I’m Going Away is the Fiery Furnaces’ eighth album. It was recorded by and mixed with Jason Loewenstein at the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 in New York City. Jason also played bass and Robert D’Amico played drums. All songs were written together by Eleanor and Matthew Friedberger, except for the title track, which is “trad. Arranged by.” Eleanor wrote most of the lyrics; Matt wrote most of the music and also produced the album.
All rock music is a sort of dramatic music. And since the times are tough, it makes sense to have that “drama” be something more like a version of Taxi than something like a version of Titanic. We like Taxi better than Titanic anyway. So we hope that some of the songs on this record can be used as theme songs to folks’ own personal versions of Taxi. Because — ideally — the dramatic setting of the music isn’t provided by the story or image of the given act or band. It’s provided by the lives of the people who use-listen to-the music. That is pop music’s promise and problem, or danger. So be careful and don’t get canceled.”
No. 2: They’re playing with the White Rabbits, those dapper killers.
No. 3: Here’s a video for White Rabbits’ “Percussion Gun,” from their album It’s Frightening.
No. 4: Catch them now, because their upcoming release will be a silent album. In fact, your band could be playing the next FF show.
No. 5: The FF are strong supporters of health-care reform, and have put out a call to turn their shows into health-care reform rallies (this can be accomplished in several ways, according to their dispatch).
“Why, just think of how much more fun for everyone it will be if an anti-reform mob, with all their swastika stickers and show-us-your-birth-certificate banners and joker make-up, come on down and picket the show? I mean, Rally! What an easy way to expand your fan base!”
The show is Tuesday night, Aug. 25, at 9 p.m. $13 advance/$15 day of show. www.thegreyeagle.com.