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Rockin' Our Turntable: Super Furry Animals

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 26, 2009 3:20PM

2009_03_SFA_dark_days.jpg The first time we heard Super Furry Animals, just about a decade ago, we remember thinking "what the hell are these guys on?!" before falling under the intoxicating and influential haze of their abrasive psychedelic dance-rock and begging to "take whatever the hell those guys are on!"

Since then we've seen the band a number of times -- the highlight had to be the Rings Around The World-era set at The Abbey where the band brought their own surround sound system into the house -- and they've never let us down in that arena. We've also loved every disc they've put out, though we've noticed that the group has stayed in a bit of a holding pattern musically since Rings. As time has passed they've grown comfortable with crafting a certain type of album, not unlike The Flaming Lips have done since The Soft Bulletin. The results remain impressive even if they haven't been compressing our sternum each and every time.

The band's latest, Dark Days / Light Years, breaks out of the comfortable line of flight they've been occupying in the last few years. It's a brashly immediate piece of work that's vibrantly rough around the edges. It appears as if group members' solo work has burnished off a few of the layers of polish the band had grown accustomed to applying to group efforts with results that are more pleasingly organic. The results are still grand, but the band sounds more like a band bashing out cheer inducing vertiginous rock and/or roll rather than one that meticulously crafts each and every noise in the studio with tremendous care. The brush strokes are showing and the paint splatters tip us off the instinct has grabbed control and that fills us with giddy glee.

Dark Days / Light Years is out digitally right now on the band's site. The physical version comes out April 14 at iTunes and on CD, and on vinyl on April 21.

MP3: Super Furry Animals "Inaugural Trams"