The Fernweh are a three-piece from Liverpool who play psych/folk/pop/rock that harks back to the late ‘60s/early ‘70s. Their music recalls Piper At The Gates Of Dawn-era Pink Floyd, The Moody Blues, Heron, The Trees and many Vertigo and Island bands of that era. Self-titled LP and CD on Skeleton Key.
Vinyl LP £15.49 0190295528065
LP on Skeleton Key.
CD £11.99 0190295528089
CD on Skeleton Key.
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- The Fernweh by The Fernweh
Lots of Twitter love for this lot over the last few weeks which makes us prick up our ears to find out what all the fuss is about and...yes -my goodness this is good. Just take a listen to Next Time Around - a superbly produced piece of whimsical pop which brings to mind all the hazy late 60s bands such as the Move, Pink Floyd and the Kinks. They recorded this in a studio near Robin Hood's Bay and it certainly must have the exact right sort of 60s dust in the soundboard as this is very authentic indeed.
If you are a fan of Pink Floyd and Can you will have already got smitten with opener The Liar as it perfectly combines the two. The organ sound is pure Rick Wright, the motorik drumming pure Can but they blend the two sounds beautifully in a pop song that is both rhythmic, melodic and rather touching. The chorus suddenly rises up to a Barrett-style holler before the band launch into an extended jam.
The band have a gorgeous bucolic quality especially on tracks like Hand Me Down which recalls the hazy hippie psych of Trees and the more recent Espers but theirs is a varied sound palette that on A Leaf Didn't Move which sounds like a distinctly English take on Pet Sounds era Beach Boys symphonies though the sax solo is a bit much it has to be said).
Some of the time this reminds me of the first Temples album in that it's supremely confident and well put together - the band seemingly arrive fully formed with a sound which admittedly takes a lot from a certain era of British music but re-arranges the ingredients into exciting new forms. Unlike, say, Tame Impala the band are content to re-produce rather than innovate but here they have created an album which - to borrow the title from their evocative instrumental that hits at track 3 - is a Timepiece which will thrill fans of the golden age of English pop psychedelia.
6/10 Jonny C 21st December 2018
This is a good band, very skilled and dextrous on their instruments, and some of the tunes are very "tasteful" and pretty.
But in 2018, nearly 2019, do people really want more of this kind of fan-fiction? You can literally name 3 bands that inspired each individual song. It sounds like it was recorded on old gear and produced to make it slot into the late 1960's and early 1970's.
This means it is utterly not of it's own time, 2018, and therefore rendered rather powerless, except to provoke nostalgia, or remind us of better, more original LP's from the time period they are aping.
I don't get why bands make these choices - if you want to bring old ideas back to the fore, why not present them in a way that's relevant to now? Instead of pretending the last 40-odd years never happened? Retro-production with news ideas, fair enough, but retro-production with retro sounds / arrangements etc. and you are denying your music any life or relevance in it's own time.
Such a shame for a band with such obvious talents.
10/10 eddie beckett 6th December 2018
Psych-folk masterpiece by former members of Edgar Jones /Candie Payne band. These guys can really play. And tastefully too. This is beautiful songwriting that really takes you on a journey. Hand Me Down and Where Did The Sea Go are wonderful examples of cinematic, dark folk music, that transport you to another time. New Brighton Sigh could have been written by Brian Wilson. Next Time Around is maybe the best song I've heard since Waterfall. Liar is like Joy Division with Richard Thompson on guitar. So much to discover in this wonder of an album!!!
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