Review Summary: The musical embodiment of a moonlit forest.
Foxing's debut The Albatross
shook me up. The incredibly personal lyrics resonated with me like they would any other twenty-something moper. Upon learning that Dealer
was slated release mere weeks after I discovered Foxing, I instantly got full of hype and expectation for what the self-described 'post good' band could come up with.
I was not disappointed. Dealer
is a far more reserved and quiet record, but it is in no way less emotional than the band's first release. This time around, however, emotion is portrayed more so with swelling guitars and strings than with harsh vocal melodies and hard-hitting lyrics. This doesn't mean that Conor Murphy's vocals are not stellar; the vocal melodies accompany the instrumentation in a vein similar to Bon Iver, sweeping in and out between beautiful chord structures and haunting drumwork.
I haven't heard such an easy record to listen to in a very long time. Songs seep into one another; almost to the extent where listening to individual songs would make them less enjoyable. The positioning in each song is what makes Dealer
work so well. First two songs (and singles) Weave
and The Magdalene
are very vocal-centric, and they fade slowly into Laundered
, which focus more on creating a soundscape of strings and guitar, rather than drawing the listener to lyrics.
Highlight of Dealer
for me is, without a doubt, Winding Cloth
. A four and a half minute instrumental piece, heavily inspired by Post-Rock bands such as Explosions in the Sky, mixes piano with heartbreaking strings and soaring brass. It is a truly wonderful piece of music, and shows Foxing's ability to mix many genres of music in an album while still keeping a coherent theme.
My only real criticism of Dealer
is that around the 15 minute mark the album slows down a little too much. Laundered
, while a pleasant listen, feels a lot longer than it is, and it halts the flow of the album. Make no mistake though, Foxing's sophomore release is a beautiful album full of wonderful melodies and instrumentation. A true must-have for anyone who wants a soundtrack to an introspective evening.