Chris Farren
Can't Die


3.5
great

Review

by LotusFlower USER (24 Reviews)
October 7th, 2016 | 8 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Living is sexy

Hot off the heels of Leavin’ La Vida Loca with Antarctigo Vespucci and the Fake Problems record Real Ghosts Caught on Camera before that, the versatile frontman has only further solidified his footing with an influential blend of both records. Condensed in a short, but brilliant 30 minute debut, Chris Farren displays his strengths as a songwriter and performer with a record that touches base with the dry cut formality of ‘dream pop’ while mixing in various styles of other genres and influences without over-complexifying the deviation or exemplifying the cliches of modern day dream pop.

In parts, Can’t Die plays its game straight: lush guitar tones that give off a comfortable, afternoon-beach-outing vibe, cutesy melodies, lyrics that push an almost ironic sadness, and gentle vocals that really tie the room together. While the formality is familiar in that regard, where Can’t Die succeeds is in Farren’s performance and occasional twists. With its short run time, most of the album seams together as a singular track following a “fast pop/slow acoustic” back and forth relationship throughout. When the album is treading familiar ground with its poppier outings, Farren deploys an intriguing mixture of vocal effects and instrumental choice to punctuate the record’s sad love-struck tone in fresh ways. This effect is seen to its best effort on tracks such as “Can’t Die”, “Flowers”, “Brighter,” and “Don’t Be Cruel” where vocals are presented either low or higher in the mix to signify Farren’s conviction, or vulnerability; which in turn, makes his themes and material all the more interesting as he explores the pitfalls of love and the mundanity of emptiness.

Instrumentally, these sort of tracks employ elements of orchestras, alternative country, and even 80s new-wave to give the album more distinct personality and atmosphere. And for all these moments, they work perfectly. None of these deviations are groundbreaking or mind blowing, but their presence and execution work well when complementing the more straight forward pop tracks such as “Say U Want Me” which is a quick moving pop track with a thickly mixed bass lead, a light piano/xylophone riff, and well placed synths and electric guitar lines for atmosphere. Even in these moments, the album shines with their execution, where the placement of these simple elements make each track all the more effective and catchy. Thanks to a short run time and solid songwriting, Can’t Die sticks around with you despite its run coming and going. While the bountiful interludes rub off as filling over necessary, the record overall shows the potential Chris Farren carries as his portfolio continues to grow. And as his projects begin to grow, his work in turn continues to equally grow as exemplary for the modern day era of dream pop music, and beyond.



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user ratings (23)
3.5
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
LotusFlower
October 7th 2016


12000 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Stand Outs: Brighter, Say U Want Me, Flowers, Everything’s My Fault, Until I Can See the Light

Blow Outs: To Insecurity & Beyond

Stream: http://chrisfarren.bandcamp.com/album/cant-die



I have about 14 unfinished reviews from 2013-now. I will be attempting to go through all of them and getting them all released eventually. Comments and criticism appreciated. Next review will be my highly experimental review (read: shit post) of Sum 41's upcoming 13 Voices.

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
October 7th 2016


31857 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

great album!

LotusFlower
October 7th 2016


12000 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Indeed!

kris.
October 7th 2016


15504 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

punk rock icon chris farren

AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
October 7th 2016


7187 Comments


Looking forward to that Sum 41 review man. Also, dis good, pos

FullOfSounds
October 7th 2016


15814 Comments


Great review, pos

Pajolero
October 16th 2016


1201 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is very enjoyable. Chris Farren remains my favorite boy.

Digging: Spice (USA-CA) - Spice

Satellite
February 15th 2017


26523 Comments


this is so damn good

Digging: Propagandhi - Today's Empires, Tomorrow's Ashes (reissue)



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