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Album Review

"Fancey" Schmancey — you know, like Nilsson Schmilsson? Well, not exactly, but Todd Fancey's glorious obsession with '70s soft rock and sunshine pop isn't sullied in the least by a comparison to Nilsson's masterpiece of subversive pop. If anything, Fancey has gone out of his way to up the subversion factor on his second solo effort; the production and arrangements are gloriously user friendly, and Fancey's crew of like-minded musicians (including fellow New Pornographer Kurt Dahle) summon a sound as tight and emphatic as any crew of Los Angeles session heavyweights could deliver in the Golden Age. But between Fancey's eager embrace of an impressive variety of dangerous drugs on "Blue Star," the cheerful doom of "Lost in Twilight," the rocker's avarice of "Whoa," the creepy enthusiasm of "Heaven's Way"'s paean to Christian Conservatism, and the self-explanatory angst of "Karma's out to Get Me," this is album whose engaging surfaces cover a dark side as sure as the front cover artwork shows a sun-dappled garden hovering over the flames of Hell. But on Schmancey, the twist in the tale is part of the fun, and the undertow provides a ying that adds weight to the yang of Fancey's bright and superbly crafted pop tunes, powered by his stylistically malleable guitar work and period-appropriate keyboards. One might think being in one superb indie pop act would be enough, but Fancey's presence in the New Pornographers and on his own records suggest he's becoming a one-man dynasty of upbeat sounds with a nasty undercurrent.


Formed: 2004 in Vancouver, B.C.

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Best known as a guitarist for Vancouver's indie rock supergroup the New Pornographers (he joined in 2002 and played on their 2003 record, Electric Version), Todd Fancey was also a member of Limblifter and played bass on their 2000 release, Bellaclava. Originally hailing from Nova Scotia, Fancey was in many bands before joining Limblifter, including Macabre, Sunshower, Virgin Lust, Jack Tripper, and Taste of Joy. In 2004, he released his solo project under the name Fancey for March Records. Drawing...
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Schmancey, Fancey
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