7 December 2012

Far - Water & Solutions

Sometimes it seems like revisiting something you loved when you were younger is not the way to go. I remember a few years ago when I watched The Goonies after many years and made the mistake of watching it as an adult and not as the 9 year old who does not see the flaws and bad acting coupled with plot holes and faults a plenty.

Far when they started came from Sacramento, California and this was their last release before they original split in 1999.  The band were responsible for being one of the founding elements of became known as Emotional Rock - or Emo for short - before it became a fashion statement and haircut. With Jonah Matranga's heartfelt lyrics, Shaun Lopez's driven guitars and the back bone in the form of bass player John Gutenberger and drummer Chris Robyn the band should have had a sure driven hit on their hands when this was released. It gained many a glowing praise from the music media at the time.  But the Gods of Music are fickle and the masses did not really go for this.  Within a year from it's release the band had folded and gone on the pastures new at the time.

Musically this is the right sort of mixture of punk, hardcore and genuine passion that drives the listener from the opening shoot of "Bury White" to the welcoming arms of "Waiting For Sunday" without much chance of getting bored along the way.  The albums crowning glories - the previously mentioned "Bury White", "Mother Mary" and "Man Overboard" should be taught to kids to show that this is how to be emotional without having to steal your mother's make up and straighteners.

Going back to this album again, I have had to look at it outside my own comfort zone.  I am a massive fan of any works involving Mr. Matranga.  My wedding present from my wife is a personal CD from the man himself which I have kept away and listen to when I feel lonely and down.  But I am trying to look at this objectively as a man, not the teenager (OK 20 something  when I discovered these guys - but being a man you always tend to be a boy anyway).  A couple of songs still feel sort of filling, but not in a way that distracts from the overall package.  The production is still crisp and could have been just recorded yesterday, and for all it little details which make it seem like should be destined for the bedrooms of the few who remember it at the time, it should be given a listen by some new ears. Yes the band themselves are gone (after briefly getting back together and making one more album in 2010), but their works are still here.

Sometimes it seems like revisiting something you loved when you were younger is not the way to go - and sometimes it is just the right decision to make. For anyone who loves alternative rock, I recommend this in a heartbeat.

8 out of 10 - Oh, now you have my attention and maybe my money, time and heart

You can buy from here

You can listen to on Spotify here

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