Facing New York
Facing New York


4.0
excellent

Review

by Yotimi USER (3 Reviews)
May 6th, 2010 | 10 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The greatest progressive post indie math rock album ever?

Released in 2005, the debut album from California's Facing New York is an impressive exploration of identity, the human spirit, and the disillusion with modern life. Very much in the spirit of Moving Mountains (although predating them by two years), Facing NY use a post-rock approach to their brand of indie rock, with a little math-rock thrown in for good flavor (a la The Dismemberment Plan). However, touring with mostly pop-punk bands, such as Taking Back Sunday, their music has had a difficult time reaching an appropriate audience, which has resulted in some inner band turmoil, including band members calling it quits after their self-titled debut.

Now, at the risk of sounding unprofessional, I will tell you the real reason to listen to this album: 'Full Turn'. Prepare for a full blown eargasm, climaxing midway through with asymmetrical drumming that will melt your mind (specifically from the 2:35 to the 3:00 mark). Okay Okay, the rest is great too, but just don't quite match the brilliance contained within those blissful five minutes.

Now that I have given no reason to listen to the full album, let me just say that this is far from the truth and this album has plenty going for it. 'We Are' builds and acts as an appropriate precursor to the excellent 'Javelina'. Beginning with ringing bells and guitar scratches, lyrics about confusion and self-identity lead the listener through an onslaught of echoey guitars over odd time signatures, supported by off-kilter keyboards. After the abstract and broader interpretations of identy and introspection are explored, 'Cutting My Hair' focuses on the more tangible and mundane aspects of discovering identity. As if giving up on understanding it in abstract terms, the refrain sarcastically insists, "I've been washing my face. I've been trying so hard, but nothing's going to work. I've been cutting my hair, but it's going nowhere."

The band is at their best when they keep things uptempo, keeping the instrumentation tight and dense, and constantly keeping the listeners' attention with shifting arrangements. Also, the odd time signatures seem more effortless and work towards creating an interesting sound when they keep things exciting, such as on the proggy 'Flagstaff' and the other highlight 'Styrofoam Walls'. Where the album starts to show its flaws is during the slower songs that come across much more awkwardly. Rather than keeping you on your toes anticipating each and every unexpected turn contained within the majority of the album, 'Apple Sugar Cider' lulls you to sleep with uninspiring guitars and quiet drumming. It's not necessarily a bad song; it's textured beautifully and the accompanying keyboards add a great feel. It just sort of goes nowhere and for far too long.

Overall, this is an extremely impressive effort with brilliant musicianship with an uncanny knack for creating beautifully textured soundscapes. For the drumming enthusiast, you could probably focus on just the percussion and still fall in love (much like many do with The National). For the ambient/post-hardcore Circa Survive fans, there is plenty to love here with the interweaving guitar lines. And for the rest of the listening population, there is 'Full Turn'.


user ratings (21)
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
DiceMan
May 6th 2010


7066 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Downloading now. Sounds interesting.

AggravatedYeti
May 6th 2010


7683 Comments


nice, album sounds really interesting

Yotimi
May 6th 2010


7652 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Cool, I think you guys would like this

Athom
Emeritus
May 7th 2010


17242 Comments


I saw these guys open up for Coheed around the time this came out. Good album, too bad the band went to shit afterwards.

Yotimi
May 7th 2010


7652 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Their next album wasn't bad, but it did seem like they just goofed around on each song

EVedder27
May 7th 2010


6088 Comments


Good to see you reviewing man, sounds really interesting I'll probably listen at some point.

Rev
May 7th 2010


9882 Comments


This band is awesome

Abaddon2005
May 7th 2010


684 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

fantastic album.

DiceMan
May 12th 2010


7066 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, this is actually really good. From the sound of it I won't be checking out their other stuff though.

XingKing
April 11th 2013


15669 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I was just thinking I need to review this album because I love it so much and then I click it and lo and behold, there is already a review



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