NAF : FRIGHTENED RABBIT / The Winter Of Mixed Drinks

Posted on March 5, 2010

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Not done one of these for ages. You remember, New Album Friday is where I dash out to FOPP on a Friday lunchtime, return to the office with a new CD and blog the first impressions. What happened? Was it winter? Did I stop going out and buying new albums? Do any of you give a shit? I suspect not. All that matters is NAF is back, and back with a bang because it’s March and Frightened Rabbit have a new album out.

One of the things I initially loved about Frightened Rabbit’s first two albums was the stealthy appeal of their songs. It’s a personal thing I guess but for me yer typical FR song doesn’t immediately grab, instead it sinks in, sinks in deep and before you know it it’s part of your soul.

With one notable exception, the songs on The Winter Of Mixed Drinks maintain this proud tradition. The hooks drift into you, settling deep like gold dust on the river bed, only really catching your attention with a darkling glint, and then becoming utterly enthralling.   Opener ‘Things’ and closer ‘Yes, I Would’ are both good examples of songs I haven’t quite felt the shape of yet, but I’m willing to be they’ll become favourites.

The exception of course is single, ‘Swim Until You Can’t See Land’.  First heard this song just before Christmas and, hooky as Peter Pan’s adversary, it was immediately embedded. Great we song.

On a general note, the arrangement and production on this outing sound less spare than previous albums, and this adds to a general feeling of, shall we say, optimism? about it. Songs with titles like ‘Not Miserable’ and ‘Living In Colour’ would suggest this might be so (although irony might be at play there).

Me, I’m just looking forward to playing these songs over and over until I realise once more that I’m in love.

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