ALBUM REVIEW: Fatherson – Normal Fears
Photo Credit: Stewart Bryden
Over three years since their last full-length release, indie-rock trio Fatherson have made a return and are set to steal the hearts of the Scottish music scene with their upcoming album Normal Fears. Though curiosity grows high, as the new record faced some delays due to vinyl production issues, we can assure it is worth the wait.
Album opener and first single End Of The World presents something new to what the past Fatherson records held, paving the way for the rest of the album. With a playful synth and bass introduction, this song takes the concept of heartbreak at the end of a relationship and turns it into something hopeful. Taking a leap into the more joyous parts of love, Love For Air guides us through a path of vibrant melodies alongside a layered chorus of different vocals, while Fatherson continue to carry their optimism of love onto their second single, Normal People.
Acting as a change of pace, Everything gradually slows down the album with a relaxed beat to bring more attention to the lyrics, before releasing itself into a stripped back tune of Do It For Yourself. Its powerful acoustic guitar and motivational lyrics will undoubtedly have you drawn in from the second the chorus begins. We are soon directed to Fatherson’s third single, an emotive piano ballad titled Honest To God. By expressing lyrics such as “I couldn’t explain it. So I won’t even try, but the light in my eyes has gone cold”, Fatherson tells the story of losing confidence in themselves and struggling to see their future in music.
Returning to the already established upbeat sounds in The Feeling and the Sun, the refreshing beat is supported by a tambourine and a catchy chorus which was co-written by Seton Daunt. Following these upbeat sounds, we quite literally take a dive into the next song – Dive was released as their fourth single and understandably so. This song effectively shows the dynamic of the band by unveiling the true capabilities of each member and their instruments, and is an accurate representation of what Fatherson is. Adding onto the list of remarkable singles, Better Friend makes an appearance. The angelic backing vocals are a main contribution to the song and will have you in awe from the very beginning.
As we make our way through the album, All The Time strikes us with a sense of melancholy. This song gives us an opportunity to admire the potential of frontman Ross Leighton’s memorable vocals, which is also noticed nearing the end of the tracklist in Crying Wolf. Though the melody of All The Time does portray feelings of sadness, the lyrics offer us a sense of reassurance: “I won’t always say all the right things, but I can show you inside my mind. Nobody feels this way all the time”. Persisting further, 365 shows unique qualities, including Fatherson’s creative use of whistling in unison throughout the chorus’ background. The soft piano melody emerging within the introduction also creates a calming and inviting environment to set the track off in the perfect direction. The album is rounded off nicely with an all acoustic song Wreckage in the Rubble, the faultless tune forging a fun and laid back mood, strongly tying the album together.
Fatherson have flourished by pushing their limits and creating something entirely new. Normal Fears is just the tip of the iceberg of what the trio can achieve and we are thrilled to be watching them continue with their musical journey.
Standout Tracks: Love For Air, Do It For Yourself, 365
For Fans Of: Frightened Rabbit, The Japanese House, Bombay Bicycle Club
Written by: Lucy Cheyne