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Field Music

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Album Review

Field Music are a trio of northern lads who work a rich seam of melodic and angular guitar with indie pop arrangements on their excellent self-titled debut record. For those who enjoy easy comparisions, here are a few: XTC at their most pop, the Beach Boys fed through a post-punk strainer, the New Pornographers with a dimmer switch. Formed by original Futureheads drummer Peter Brewis (and joined by brother David and Andrew Moore), the group shares some of the herky-jerky, harmony-rich feel of the Futureheads but exhibits a much calmer and more melancholy and diverse approach. The 12 tracks feature loads of vocal harmonies, inventive arrangements (harmonicas, glockenspiels, saxophones, falsettos galore), and soaring choruses the likes of which put them ahead of their old mates and at the forefront of this year's model of the British Invasion. Indeed, when Field Music are working at their peak, as on the quietly desperate "Got to Get the Nerve," "Like When You Meet Someone Else," the cello-sporting pop gem "Shorter Shorter," and the autumnal "It's Not the Only Way to Feel Happy," they display a feel for dynamics and an unfailingly catchy style of songcraft that their counterparts can't come near. That is enough to make Field Music one of the bands to watch in the mid-2000s, and to make their album one you have to hear if you are dedicated to smart, inventive, and exciting guitar pop.

Biography

Formed: Sunderland, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Hailing from Sunderland, England, indie/art rockers Field Music were formed in the early 2000s by siblings Peter and David Brewis. Their colorful and hyper-musical blend of tricky Beach Boys melodies filtered through a post-rock-meets-prog-rock-meets-soft-rock aesthetic has drawn comparisons to the New Pornographers and the Futureheads. Their self-titled debut was released in 2005 on Memphis Industries Records, followed by Write Your Own History in 2006 and Tones of Town in 2007. After this burst...
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