clap clap blog: we have moved

Wednesday, April 07, 2004
I have now heard the single version of the Fiery Furnaces' "Tropical Ice-Land" (found on The Big Ticket, I believe) and it's still not quite what I'm looking for. It pains me to type this, but it's actually too discordant. And I know, I know, that's a big part of their charm, but given what I think this could be (and given how pretty the original is), the out-of-tune slide guitar riff doesn't work, the reverby noises behind the chorus don't work, the keyboard hook that doesn't quite reach that last note doesn't work, the mixed-high vocal FX fuckery doesn't work. And the drums in the verse aren't that hot either. I dunno--I guess this is just a function of their particular specialty, but given how versatile they are, I'd love to see a single version of some song or another that's just 100% pop, without much of the wonderfully weird production bits that characterize the album version, because a lot of these really are great pop songs that could sound just as good in an unabashed form. I guess I sort of always think this, but I don't want this to be their usual operating principle, just a sort of one or two song experiment. And who knows--maybe they didn't feel confident in this style enough to pull it off. But I think now, or pretty soon, they definitely could.

And having lived with "I Lost My Dog" for a while, I can't help but think a similar thing--the second verse is just so good, absent a slightly better drum part, that it's grown to annoy me how the whole thing falls out of that tempo after the third or fourth verse. (There's, what, 8 or 9 verses? This is awesome.) I really love that backwards-kick breakdown bit, and even love it at that tempo, but I want it to charge back into the faster beat, given how good they are at shifting tempos. I think it'd be great if it really went for it at the end.

I might do something about that myself, though...