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Fanfarlo - Drowning Men

The lilting keyboards and the driving drums create a dramatic mood.

London’s Fanfarlo certainly picked a great band to crib from, as the opening strains of ‘Drowning Men’ will surely remind anyone who has spent a decent amount of time with Arcade Fire’s ‘Funeral’ of their track ‘Rebellion (Lies)’. And while ‘Drowning Men’ does create its own emotional path, that underlying hint of similar melodies remains distracting and divests the track of a certain amount of uniqueness and charm. The lilting keyboards and the driving drums do create a dramatic mood and guide the song nicely to a soaring finish, but the nagging influence of both Arcade Fire and Beirut linger just beneath the surface.

The production on this track is top-notch, and is handled adroitly by Peter Katis (The National, Interpol). His production gives the track a lustrous feel, and certainly provides a roboust dimension to the song that doesn’t sound at all like a typical indie release. And the David Byrne-like vocals of Simon Balthazer really suit the song well, as he follows the melody upwards in tone and intensity, and helps usher the song to its soaring finale.

The band certainly needs to create their own unique sound before all the hype is indeed warranted, and from the sound of their full-length ‘Reservoir’, they are on their way to finding it. But at least on this single, they are treading over pretty familiar sonic ground, and while the song is a good one, you just can’t escape the fact that you’ve heard it done before.

Tags: Fanfarlo, Reviews

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