Big Thief - U.F.O.F. (May 3, 2019)

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Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

― System, Wednesday, February 20, 2019 7:01 PM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

― System, Thursday, February 21, 2019 7:01 PM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

new album, u.f.o.f., in may

― jolene club remix (BradNelson), Tuesday, February 26, 2019 11:17 AM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Nice! I loved that song live solo, and it sounds great in that arrangement too

― longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Tuesday, February 26, 2019 11:35 AM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

01) Contact
02) UFOF
03) Cattails
04) From
05) Open Desert
06) Orange
07) Centruy
08) Strange
09) Betsy
10) Terminal Paradise
11) Jenni
12) Magic Dealer

― diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Tuesday, February 26, 2019 1:45 PM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

im gonna be really sad if "not" isn't on this album with a different name

― diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Tuesday, February 26, 2019 1:45 PM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

So they're doing band version of a couple of the songs from abysskiss. Can't say I mind that.

― longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Tuesday, February 26, 2019 2:20 PM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Oh my god, UFOF

― Mule, Friday, March 8, 2019 6:38 AM (one month ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

can't stop listening to the new song

― hot dog go to bathroom (cajunsunday), Sunday, March 17, 2019 3:33 PM (three weeks ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

It’s a beautiful song. I have to admit I’m not loving this meek/wispy approach to her vocals lately, which seems to be half performance and half production. Still psyched about the record.

― longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Sunday, March 17, 2019 7:53 PM (three weeks ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

It befits the spirit-like feel of the song, imo, like a ghost in static. But yeah, hope she’ll mix it up on the record.

― Mule, Monday, March 18, 2019 7:43 AM (three weeks ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I've become obsessed with this band & this record just in the past month as a result of this thread, and I'm miffed that "Objects" didn't get even a single vote. Lyrics to that one are kind of whatever, I'll grant; but musically, it reminds me a lot of Pinback, one of my favorite bands ever to do the indie rock thing

― The depressed somebody from the popular David Bowie song, (bernard snowy), Tuesday, March 19, 2019 6:28 AM (three weeks ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Wednesday, 10 April 2019 14:55 (two months ago) Permalink

Figured it was time for a new thread. Two songs out. I like Cattails and love U.F.O.F. -- one of those songs you just play on repeat all morning and then it's in your head all day.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Wednesday, 10 April 2019 14:56 (two months ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1CvjxgWgTU

this album is gonna be good as fuck

american bradass (BradNelson), Tuesday, 30 April 2019 15:42 (one month ago) Permalink

The singles released so far aren't that exciting imo

nostormo, Tuesday, 30 April 2019 16:41 (one month ago) Permalink

first track of this is astonishing

american bradass (BradNelson), Friday, 3 May 2019 14:40 (one month ago) Permalink

Hopefully Spotify is unfucked by the time I leave work, or maybe I'll just (gasp) buy it.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Friday, 3 May 2019 14:48 (one month ago) Permalink

try reinstalling it? it’s what worked for me

american bradass (BradNelson), Friday, 3 May 2019 14:55 (one month ago) Permalink

reinstalled, restarted my iphone, etc.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Friday, 3 May 2019 15:07 (one month ago) Permalink

lol what a day

anyway: this record!!! “betsy” is blowing my mind. i love that their songs are never in a hurry to get anywhere and yet they go everywhere

american bradass (BradNelson), Friday, 3 May 2019 15:09 (one month ago) Permalink

I ordered from Norman Records so my copy might not some til monday

Thus Spoke Darraghustra (Oor Neechy), Friday, 3 May 2019 15:41 (one month ago) Permalink

bit underwhelmed so far tbh. it's super stark and if there are hooks, they're yet to pop through

frame casual (dog latin), Friday, 3 May 2019 20:00 (one month ago) Permalink

the cover is giving me very much 2005 freakfolk vibes

frame casual (dog latin), Friday, 3 May 2019 20:00 (one month ago) Permalink

not isn't on this

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Friday, 3 May 2019 20:02 (one month ago) Permalink

I love this record. The only real dud for me is the baffling rework of From. And I think Cattails doesn’t totally fit and could maybe have been a single instead.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Saturday, 4 May 2019 01:32 (one month ago) Permalink

no the “from” arrangement is AMAZING

american bradass (BradNelson), Saturday, 4 May 2019 01:43 (one month ago) Permalink

I also could do without their weird penchant for lo budget sound fx. There’s one that sounds like someone drinking the very end of a slurped.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Saturday, 4 May 2019 02:09 (one month ago) Permalink

*slurpee

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Saturday, 4 May 2019 02:09 (one month ago) Permalink

oh man "Strange"

ufo, Saturday, 4 May 2019 06:31 (one month ago) Permalink

Posted to wrong thread: Wow, the new album is extremely wonderful. But also quite difficult to listen to without crying.

'From' is incredible and her vocal performance on it is so bizarre. And is that a fire crackling in the background?

alrakis morissette (tangenttangent), Saturday, 4 May 2019 13:24 (one month ago) Permalink

First impression: melodied are weaker: too basic and repetitive within the song. Not my cup of tea. Loved Capacity though.

nostormo, Saturday, 4 May 2019 14:53 (one month ago) Permalink

capacity did nothing for me but this was really immediate for me and i love it. i'm completely enamoured by that part in "strange" with the sustained "ahh" and the ascending bass line.

weirdly "from" really reminds me of late-period radiohead?

ufo, Sunday, 5 May 2019 13:25 (one month ago) Permalink

also really love the way "jenni" is so immense after most of the album is so quiet

ufo, Sunday, 5 May 2019 13:31 (one month ago) Permalink

also occurred to me re new from, quite in rainbows-y

Roberto Spiralli, Sunday, 5 May 2019 13:48 (one month ago) Permalink

I think it's a less immediate, less song and voice-driven record than the first two were, and part of me wishes that weren't the case, but at the same time, it's a very beautiful record with a wonderful sound.

I guess when I saw her live the new material did have that immediacy, and I feel like somehow that got a bit lost in the production of both this and the solo record. The moment I think it gets closest to that prior immediacy is on Orange.

I mean the way she does From here, for example, just connects with me much more than either recorded version
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QckxTQQ9XBo&t=364s . Somehow Luke Temple's production makes her voice sound too small and cute, although I do like the abysskiss version a good deal.

The song that connects with me most directly is Terminal Paradise, which I think benefits a lot from the full band arrangement. Others, like UFOF and Strange are a bit more obscured, though really good.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 6 May 2019 02:35 (one month ago) Permalink

And anyway, at the other end of the spectrum, songs like Paul and Real Love sometimes felt a bit too heavy handed to me, so overall I like the direction she's going in.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 6 May 2019 02:36 (one month ago) Permalink

i've liked big thief and am excited to check this out but o_O this new pitchfork review has some lines

"Adrianne Lenker, the singer and oxygen of the Brooklyn quartet, whose lyrics can, among other things, bind all that is living and has ever lived together at the cellular level. "

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 May 2019 14:05 (one month ago) Permalink

Ha! I read it too. It's goofy to put it mildly.

kornrulez6969, Monday, 6 May 2019 14:30 (one month ago) Permalink

Being able to bind all that is living and has ever lived together at the cellular level is what it takes to get a 9+ BNM score on Pitchfork in 2019. The only people meet that criteria this year are them and Beyonce.

MarkoP, Monday, 6 May 2019 14:35 (one month ago) Permalink

yeesh, I love her too but

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 6 May 2019 15:23 (one month ago) Permalink

If you listen to the album and then read the review, it all kinda makes sense if a bit overblown. I do think the strength of Big Thief is that they seem plain and familiar on first blush but somehow pull you into a deep and strange world where the songs they created are the only things that exists.

But if I’d read that review prior to hearing a note of Big Thief, I’d be expecting something different—like, Charalambides or something.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Monday, 6 May 2019 15:47 (one month ago) Permalink

that reads like the writer mixed up their Big Thief review with their "reconsidering midichlorians" piece on a Star Wars site.

omar little, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:13 (one month ago) Permalink

I'm interested in the among other things, like can I bring my plants back to life with her lyrics? jk I love this record and I like this review too

flamboyant goon tie included, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:32 (one month ago) Permalink

I like parts of the review by but it's got a little too much dip on the proverbial chip

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 6 May 2019 16:37 (one month ago) Permalink

I've listened to this album twice and so far it seems a bit weightless and slight. The great thing about Capacity was its contrast of delicacy with hugely muscular moments. Each song had a very memorable 'bit' in it that was delivered with surprising immediacy whereas on this album it feels like they're tiptoeing around, trying hard not to be blunt.

frame casual (dog latin), Tuesday, 7 May 2019 15:24 (one month ago) Permalink

This is resonating more for me than Capacity, though it is a very insular record.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Tuesday, 7 May 2019 17:17 (one month ago) Permalink

I'm listening now - this is sounding fabulous. Opening two tracks especially

imago, Tuesday, 7 May 2019 17:41 (one month ago) Permalink

totally fucking obsessed with this record

american bradass (BradNelson), Wednesday, 8 May 2019 01:04 (one month ago) Permalink

i could go on and on about any song but "strange" has that gorgeous sunlit coda and "jenni" is this huge swallowing mouth of doom

american bradass (BradNelson), Wednesday, 8 May 2019 01:43 (one month ago) Permalink

“Century” has burrowed into my brain.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Wednesday, 8 May 2019 02:05 (one month ago) Permalink

you have wings of gold
you will never grow old

ufo, Wednesday, 8 May 2019 02:31 (one month ago) Permalink

Entrancing album. It takes me places that feel eerily familiar but I can't quite put my finger on it, like a déjà-vu. It's tender like an embrace.

Uptown VONC (Le Bateau Ivre), Wednesday, 8 May 2019 09:52 (one month ago) Permalink

i have never heard of this band before. their slow, calm, harmonical music is like a warm blanket i can wrap myself in. which works quite well right now as the temperatures outside in berlin are still quite low. the singer's voice who occasionally is quite mickey mousey (joanna newsom anyone?) bothers me sometimes but i kind of have gotten over to it. somehow their music to me sounds like coming straight from a huge dark forest full of elves and dwarfs. my fave is the first song "contact". i found it a bit hard to listen to the whole album in one go. maybe they should have gotten rid of a couple of songs in the second half. my attention span these days is not what it used to be. it must be due to the reign of the smartphone and stuff. concentration and patience have become a real challenge!

je est un autre, l'enfer c'est les autres (alex in mainhattan), Wednesday, 8 May 2019 19:41 (one month ago) Permalink

you should listen to their last album, too!! its also a blanket.

be the 2 chainz you want 2 see in the world (m bison), Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:42 (one month ago) Permalink

this album is beautiful

Dan S, Friday, 10 May 2019 01:47 (one month ago) Permalink

thinking there isn't anything I will love more than this for a while at least

Dan S, Friday, 10 May 2019 01:57 (one month ago) Permalink

another beautiful album by this band, but it isn't hitting me as hard as Capacity yet. prob just need to let it sink in a bit more. love the production though, particularly the way the drums sound on songs like the title track.

i think ur a controp (voodoo chili), Friday, 10 May 2019 14:16 (one month ago) Permalink

This is really amazing

Evokes a sort of jazzy, gauzy quality that I love about Hejira by Joni without really sounding derivative of that at all

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Friday, 10 May 2019 14:22 (one month ago) Permalink

Also would recommend if people haven't heard it - Rozi Plain - What a Boost

again not identical or anything but a very great and evocative album that has a somewhat similar feel and mix of folk/indie/jazz, def comes from a different place musically but if you like this you might like that

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Friday, 10 May 2019 14:24 (one month ago) Permalink

listening again and i think the second half is what makes it special. love how 'strange' uses a blues shuffle beat and still manages to remain so delicate, and how adrienne sounds like a totally different person on 'betsy.' and 'terminal paradise' and 'jenni' are just devastating.

i think ur a controp (voodoo chili), Friday, 10 May 2019 14:34 (one month ago) Permalink

The great thing about Capacity was its contrast of delicacy with hugely muscular moments.

i mean, there's that big moment near the end of 'contact,' but yeah, maybe that's one thing i miss on this record.

i think ur a controp (voodoo chili), Friday, 10 May 2019 14:35 (one month ago) Permalink

Evokes a sort of jazzy, gauzy quality that I love about Hejira by Joni without really sounding derivative of that at all

absolutely the guitar on contact makes me think of hejira, the same loose, relaxed atmosphere. i thought exactly the same thing a minute ago.

je est un autre, l'enfer c'est les autres (alex in mainhattan), Friday, 10 May 2019 19:20 (one month ago) Permalink

The great thing about Capacity was its contrast of delicacy with hugely muscular moments.

i mean, there's that big moment near the end of 'contact,' but yeah, maybe that's one thing i miss on this record.

― i think ur a controp (voodoo chili), Friday, May 10, 2019 9:35 AM (four hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I also wish there were some harder-hitting vocals/songs of the sort the first two albums had. She definitely goes more toward the delicate on this one.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Friday, 10 May 2019 19:30 (one month ago) Permalink

how adrienne sounds like a totally different person on ‘betsy’


Yes! It is my favorite! She is somewhere in between a growl and whisper there (“big lights in the city“ moment).

Someone recommended Rozi Plain - I agree. It is different but similar in a way

Greetings - I am a bit new here. I like to read the discussions

computerleg, Friday, 10 May 2019 20:11 (one month ago) Permalink

The wispy vocals help emphasize that weird quality they're riding so well here. It's like they exist in their own hermetically sealed universe. Going back to the older albums, they almost sound too normal to me.

Also, the arrangements are all immaculate. I'm enjoying this a lot.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Saturday, 11 May 2019 01:11 (one month ago) Permalink

their slow, calm, harmonical music is like a warm blanket i can wrap myself in.

This is a great description of the quality I most prize in any music.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Saturday, 11 May 2019 01:13 (one month ago) Permalink

xp

I also wish there were some harder-hitting vocals/songs of the sort the first two albums had. She definitely goes more toward the delicate on this one.

― longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Friday, May 10, 2019 12:30 PM (five hours ago)

but the atmosphere of it is so amazing, better than anything they have achieved previously

Dan S, Saturday, 11 May 2019 01:17 (one month ago) Permalink

I listened to all 3 albums in a row the other day & I really enjoyed how small and intimate this one sounded. Masterpiece, my first fave, sounds a bit too brash & widescreen when sandwiched between Capacity and UFOF. I’m really digging this one, with particular props to the Paranoid Android guitars on the title track.

Una Palooka Dronka (hardcore dilettante), Saturday, 11 May 2019 04:50 (one month ago) Permalink

listened another time w the hejira comparison in mind and it opened up the album enough for me that it's now my fav big thief i think? ums helpfully otm

lowercase (eric), Saturday, 11 May 2019 12:44 (one month ago) Permalink

I'm thinking this along with the new Lambchop will be my two most regulars listens this year. i love it. hoping the new Bill Callahan will be great to join them soon.

Hmmmmm (jamiesummerz), Tuesday, 21 May 2019 11:34 (four weeks ago) Permalink

I love this record. I wish I found the lyrics more rewarding but that's my only criticism really

flamboyant goon tie included, Tuesday, 21 May 2019 13:50 (four weeks ago) Permalink

I'm definitely having a harder time accessing them than with the past albums. Really any criticism I have is in the context of this still being almost certainly one of the best records of the year.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Tuesday, 21 May 2019 14:16 (four weeks ago) Permalink

yeah, "not as special as Capacity" is true of 99.9999% of all records.

i think ur a controp (voodoo chili), Tuesday, 21 May 2019 14:17 (four weeks ago) Permalink

I've been completely obsessed with this record for the last couple of weeks, have now gone back to the previous two and abysskiss, and... wow.

Has anyone seen them live? They're playing in London in a couple of days, and while it's sold out I'm tempted to try to get hold of a ticket.

toby, Tuesday, 21 May 2019 19:35 (four weeks ago) Permalink

i completely adore the lyrics on this album

ufo, Tuesday, 21 May 2019 22:39 (four weeks ago) Permalink

really liked em when I saw em

but everybody calls me, (lukas), Wednesday, 22 May 2019 01:03 (four weeks ago) Permalink

saw them circa masterpiece, very good

flopson, Wednesday, 22 May 2019 03:53 (four weeks ago) Permalink

one ear to the floor
my dog barking loud
couldn't tell for sure
where the screaming sound
was coming from

american bradass (BradNelson), Wednesday, 22 May 2019 11:45 (four weeks ago) Permalink

I made the effort to get a ticket and was really glad I did - they were absolutely fantastic..

Also while "Not"wouldn't fit on this record, I hope it's on the next one, I can't get it out of my head.

toby, Friday, 24 May 2019 19:32 (three weeks ago) Permalink

I haven't seen the band but I saw her solo and it was magical.

They are playing Brooklyn in October -- I hate having to plan these things so far out in advance. It's a fucking weeknight show, how can I decide five months ahead that I'll be up for it?

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Friday, 24 May 2019 19:46 (three weeks ago) Permalink

You buy the tickets safe in the knowledge you can sell them on (for face value) if you don’t feel like it.

fancy the Dirkishness of carrying Doré a round (fionnland), Friday, 24 May 2019 21:14 (three weeks ago) Permalink

(Or alternatively don't buy them in the knowledge that you can buy them face value if you feel like it (although this is probably slightly more hassle).)

toby, Saturday, 25 May 2019 12:32 (three weeks ago) Permalink

was really struggling to fall asleep last night and kept putting on this record and nodding off and waking up in different pockets, really ideal even though i'm currently suffering

american bradass (BradNelson), Saturday, 25 May 2019 14:07 (three weeks ago) Permalink

I Think this is growing on me slightly. I keep going back to it and little things pop out each time. I like how it doesn't sound anything like Radiohead, but there are small melodic vamps that suggest these guys grew up with Kid A and HTTT.

frame casual (dog latin), Wednesday, 29 May 2019 09:09 (three weeks ago) Permalink

I really wanted to like this but her voice is the epitome of banal indie.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 29 May 2019 09:15 (three weeks ago) Permalink

I had a similar feeling when I first heard them - maybe not 'banal' but 'been there, done that'. The stronger/lyrically clearer songs - Paul, Mythological Beauty - were what pulled me in, feel like this one's definitely a harder sell.

The Pingularity (ledge), Wednesday, 29 May 2019 09:52 (three weeks ago) Permalink

a lot of this actually does feel like a better executed version of what Radiohead were going for on some of A Moon Shaped Pool, it's not that close overall but the songwriting is very Radiohead at times ("From" in particular invokes "Weird Fishes/Arpeggi" quite strongly and there's the occasional melodic fragment that feels 'Radiohead' here and there) and all the individual pieces are there for the AMSP vibes (the loose swirling piano in the background of "Cattails", the general sense of ambience, a lot of the lead guitar parts especially on "From" and "Terminal Paradise", the drumming) though they come together in a much better way than on that album

i understand how some can prefer Capacity to this if they were really into the lyrics on that but this one's so much stronger musically, but i do much prefer them going all in on the dreamy folk thing that was only one part of Capacity and still don't really care for the more straightforward indie rock songs like "Shark Smile"

ufo, Wednesday, 29 May 2019 10:17 (three weeks ago) Permalink

this actually does feel like a better executed version of what Radiohead were going for on some of A Moon Shaped Pool

The similarities are indeed there, but 'better executed'? Pffft.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 29 May 2019 10:19 (three weeks ago) Permalink

I think it's unfair to compare the two too much. Radiohead is large-scale, grandiose, maximalist. Big Thief are still grounded in acoustic folk-rock and country and this album is extremely minimalist. The only similarity is in some of the melodic and guitar elements.

frame casual (dog latin), Wednesday, 29 May 2019 10:42 (three weeks ago) Permalink

tfw singing in a whispery way is the epitome of banal indie

i can see feeling that way but it's a real projection from the listener

american bradass (BradNelson), Wednesday, 29 May 2019 12:57 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Nah. I love whispery vocals but hers lack anything resembling a signature. I would really enjoy this album otherwise.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 29 May 2019 12:59 (three weeks ago) Permalink

This is the best album ever made

frame casual (dog latin), Thursday, 30 May 2019 22:58 (three weeks ago) Permalink

let's put it this way, it is quite good. probably in this year's top ten. what i really love about it is that it is an album flowing nicely with lots of excellent songs. something very rare these days.

je est un autre, l'enfer c'est les autres (alex in mainhattan), Friday, 31 May 2019 21:57 (two weeks ago) Permalink

it hasn't got the emotional heft as Capacity.but I am a convert

frame casual (dog latin), Saturday, 1 June 2019 02:28 (two weeks ago) Permalink

never heard the band before but I put on the new one for review and damn this is impressive

1st three things I thought of, in order, were:

1. Comus "First Utterance" (lol)
2. Led Zep III
3. early Joanna Newsom

pretty special mix of sounds, catchy stuff, I'm legit impressed

Ambient Police (sleeve), Wednesday, 5 June 2019 23:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink


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