- 30 Jun 23
Beautifully intricate, observant storytelling from the Fontaines’ frontman.
Produced alongside long-time collaborator Dan Carey, Skerries' own Grian Chatten embraces a more pared back, documentarian approach than Fontaines D.C.’s typical noise-rock sound on his debut solo album, Chaos For The Fly. The hypnotic result pulls the listener into experiences of people we brush past on the street without throwing a second glance at. Surreal laments on loneliness, inner demons and debauchery mingle with poetic character studies, creating anonymity as to which vivid lyrics mirror Grian’s real emotions.
Chatten begins with jangling, ethereal guitar plucking on lust-driven track ‘The Score’, declaring "I am that wave that breaks below”. The sink or swim imagery echoes the 28-year-old’s spark of inspiration for the album, which arrived fully formed as he walked along Stoney Beach. String arrangements range from the fragile to the frenetic. “Am I the wingless one that keeps me here?” he asks on ‘Last Time Every Time Forever’, expressing the feeling of being inexplicably tethered to a person or place. The incredible ‘Fairlies’ has a Lankum edge, proclaiming cynicism while acoustic guitar chords drive his anger home.
‘Bob’s Casino’ injects a retro aesthetic, layering sweeping brass sections for rich textures as the seedy protagonist embraces the hedonism and forces misery on those around him. “I’m the king of this place / I will take my fist and I will bring it down,” Chatten croons. Later, the stunning ‘All Of The People’ bleeds like a distrustful anti-fame magnum opus. “Tell me who exactly do you think you know?” The poignant ‘Salt Throwers Off A Truck’, ‘I Am So Far’ and ‘Season for Pain’ continue Chatten’s thread of everyday figures drowning in their past or present. Chaos For The Fly archives the exaggerated aspects of Chatten’s soul into something deeply spiritual.
Listen: ‘All Of The People’
Out now via Partisan Records.
- Lifestyle & Sports
- 04 Dec 23