December 14, 2010 - Paper + Plastick
Farewell Continental do not want you to know who they really are. The members’ names—Richard Kimble, Allie Fox, Rick Deckard, Jack Ryan and Dr. Norman Spencer—are stolen from Harrison Ford’s resumé. Rumor has it they boast members drawn from the ranks of Trace The Skyline and Small Towns Burn A Little Slower, and vocalist/guitarist Kimble may or may not bear a striking resemblance to Motion City Soundtrack’s Justin Pierre. Letting their music do the talking, the six tracks on their second self-titled EP are awash in ’90s indie rock, swimming in the sounds of My Bloody Valentine, Swell, Pavement and the Flaming Lips, and it’s pretty fantastic stuff.
Opener “The Great Decay” certainly gives a nod to MBV, the feedback squall at its outset giving way to an understated melody that is simply gorgeous, Fox’s female vocals intertwining beautifully with those of Kimble. The lively bounce of “Camera Ready Kids” and “Western Boys And Girls” are buoyant in all the right ways, embracing the wonky aesthetic of Pavement, though it is the darkness that seeps into the record in places that is most affecting. The chorus “She’s a son of a bitch/She’s a son of a whore” of “Son Of A Bitch/Son Of A Whore” is wrapped in a candy-coated melody, belying the spite behind it, while “Total Devastation” is hauntingly brooding. The ebow drone that underscores the track strongly conjures memories of Swell, the vocals of Kimble and Fox more potent in their restraint, and the plaintive tone of the track is perfect for those looking for something to get depressed to.
Rounding things out is a faithful cover of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s “Our House” that sits comfortably aside what has preceded it, though a sixth original would certainly have been welcome. Regardless of who they are (or are not), Farewell Continental’s music will be a welcome addition to the collections of indie kids—and indie grown-ups—and here’s hoping we hear more from them soon.