So, I mentioned in my Visual Art post from Monday that I went to a local venue last week to see repeat performances (though, I hate calling them that because they're different in awesome ways each time) by Julia Sinclair and Seryn. The middle band on the bill, however, was brand new to me.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I present.....Foreign Fields. (Hint: if you go to that link, you can actually stream their album...but honestly, if you like it, BUY IT. It's not expensive and it's worth it if you like it. Support the artists, y'all. They'd do it for you!)
I knew within the first 30 seconds of their set that I wanted to buy their album, "Anywhere But Where I Am," as soon as they were done playing. I rarely buy music at a venue...either because they're cash only (hooray for Brian for having one of those fancy-shmancy squares on his iPhone! TECHNOLOGY!) (was it Brian that I spoke to? The cutie with the beard? I think that's right...) (extra parentheses because I like to be annoying) or because I just don't like the band enough to trust that I'll listen to the album often.
Honestly, I've done it only two other times in my life -- I bought Julia Sinclair's EP at the Sofar show I went to in October and I also bought a CD at a Tori Amos concert I went to in 1998. The opening band was an Irish group called The Devlins, and they were ahhhhhhhhhhhhmazing. Then my car got broken into and that CD got stolen...I wonder if I can still buy it...
ANYWAY. I knew I wanted to buy the album because it just felt like something I needed to have. This is not a "rock out in your car" album. As a matter of fact, I'd call it the complete opposite.This is a "totally chill out/make out" album that you could also play while being super productive at work, because the tracks move seamlessly into one another with no jarring tracks that stand out unnecessarily.
Let me go off track slightly for a moment to say that I really hate that my gut reaction is to immediately compare a new group/artist to another group/artist. I mean, it's not like I'm stacking them up against one another...it's more like "oh hey, this reminds me of this album, kind of," or, "They kind of have a _______ vibe." I hope that no artist is ever offended by that...I'm sure they have their influences and all, and I never mean to say that a group doesn't have its own individuality. I think, for me, it just ties in why I like them so much, or why they appeal to me. For example, this Foreign Fields album reminds me a lot of Blind Pilot, Radiohead, Fleet Foxes, and even sometimes a little bit Rufus Wainwright (some awesome piano and melodic lines).
So, what that may mean to YOU, the reader/potential listener, is that they have a mellow feel, intricate and tight harmonies, layered instrumentation, and beautiful melodic lines with a sound that is both classic and also modern/electronic.
Also, I LOVE their "about" section of their Facebook page (emphasis mine):
Foreign Fields is an electronic folk group that hails from the wintry plains of Wisconsin. New Years day of last year they met in their hometown, in an abandoned office building, to begin work on their first full length LP "Anywhere But Where I Am". Having no set plan or guide, the album grew naturally as they left their lives in Chicago for hot summer days, skipping stones in the rivers of Tennessee.
I just freakin' love that. "Hey guys, let's make some music and see what happens." It totally appeals to my hippie/artist nature.
I don't have a favorite track (yet), as I'm only on my 3rd full-length listen-through so far, but I'm a big fan of "Taller" and "Perfect Home" just based on my first few listens.
My only complaint about the performance I saw at Dan's last week is that...well...that's not the venue in which I would've preferred to experience their music. Dan's, to me, a native Denton resident, is more suited to higher energy, more rocking, intense groups. I'm also a snob and I like my music the way I like it/want to hear it, and I would have loved to see Foreign Fields in a more intimate setting, such as The Kessler Theatre in Dallas. I think their music has the potential to really create intimacy and atmosphere, and that wasn't happening much for me at Dan's. BUT, take my opinion with a grain of salt! After all, I was standing at the back and I couldn't see very well, and my back was hurting and I was 100% tired pregnant lady by the end of the evening, so.....yeah.
I think they were programmed perfectly between Julia and Seryn, and I LOVE hearing new groups and meeting new people, so overall it was a major win. CHECK THESE GUYS OUT. Sample their album and then buy it! Have I ever led you astray??