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Rob Huff

CD of The Week

Week of 4/24/17

    Future Islands - The Far Field (4AD)

    Future Islands have been kicking around since 2006, but they spent their first eight years under the radar until the success of their fourth album Singles. Their hit song "Seasons (Waiting on You)" and an absolutely go-for-broke performance on the Late Show with David Letterman attracted a lot of eyes and ears. With their new album The Far Field, the band is poised to capitalize on that attention.

    The Far Field sounds apiece with Singles in that their synth-pop sound remains untouched, but it's a richer, more cohesive album than the former. The band continues to traffic in tales of yearning, restlessness and heartbreak and Samuel T. Herring's lyrics are as personal as ever. Old relationships are revisited in songs like "Time on Her Side" and "Beauty of the Road," the latter of which talks about the damage touring can wreak on love.

    Of course, Future Islands' best weapon is, as always, Herring's voice. Alternating between a buttery croon and a coarse growl, Herring layers various shades of vulnerability upon each other. When he and Debbie Harry duet on "Shadows," it sounds entirely natural, even lived in. It's but one highlight on album that has many.

    Future Islands return to Philadelphia at The Fillmore on May 29th.

    **Donate $20 or more to Y-Not Radio this week to receive a copy of Whiteout Conditions on CD. Click here for details.

    Review by Andre Bennett

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