Impressive full length debut from enchanting Seattle-ites
Arriving on the scene surrounded by the kind of hype that can make people wary before they’ve even heard a note, the tentative billing of Seattle’s Fleet Foxes as “America’s next great band” has drawn swift parallels to previous holders of the title, Band Of Horses and My Morning Jacket.
Much like their bushy-bearded contemporaries, Fleet Foxes starting point is vintage country rock – that classic amalgam of The Band’s sprawling Americana and Neil Young’s wistful melancholy. Despite traversing such oft-trodden territory, there is a rich textural awareness to the band’s aesthetic that proves theirs to be a surprisingly sophisticated evocation of the American wilderness. The delicate a cappella harmonies and otherworldly spookiness of ‘Red Squirrel’ and ‘Heard Them Stirring’ lead us on an altogether more enlightened pilgrimage than usual.
It’s not just a journey through the past, mind. ‘Quiet Houses’ recalls Lost Souls-era Doves while ‘White Winter Hymnal’ congregates those sleepy high harmonies much favoured by The Shins. What truly separates Fleet Foxes from the pack is their capacity to colour emotional landscapes with the most gorgeous chord sequences. Nowhere is the payoff greater than on the sublime ‘Meadowlark’, a melodic wonderland of blurry polaroid atmospherics and cloudy nostalgia.
In the current era, characterised by a post-SXSW rush to devour the new, Fleet Foxes’ turn as band du jour will soon be up and these 11 hymns of timeless beauty are likely to remain overlooked and underheard. Which, let’s face it, is all the more reason to cherish them.
KEY TRACK: ‘MEADOWLARK’
Their first album was a surprise hit. But when it came to a follow-up, Fleet Foxes found the recording process heavy going. Frontman Robin Pecknold talks about overnight fame, the crushing burden of expectations and his debt to WB Yeats.Read More
Nu-folk cheerleaders return with an album that mistakes dullness for authenticityRead More
'Grown Ocean' clip features band footage from recording sessionsRead More
They're also doing an Eden Sessions gig with Villagers. We are so there!Read More
They're playing Live At The Marquee in June.Read More
Free download of new singleRead More
Tickets sold out in half an hourRead More
They've also bagged themselves a Beach Boy!Read More
The Seattle band put on a spookily magical performance with lush instrumentation and a raw intensity that made this one of Fleet Foxes' most memorable shows.Read More
Washington psych-folk outfit Fleet Foxes return to Dublin after an impressive Whelan's show last month.Read More
Folksy newcomers Fleet Foxes are one of the year's most critically-acclaimed bands. Just don't called them hippies.Read More
Rarely has a band arrived on the Whelan’s stage with so much recent acclaim preceding them.Read More