Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Faint

The Faint are set to release their first album in four years – Fasciinatiion – on August 5th through their own, newly-formed label, blank.wav. Fasciinatiion, The Faint's fifth album, is the first in the band's ten-year history to be written, recorded, produced, art directed and released entirely on their own. Prior to the album's release, the Omaha quintet will be hitting the road, playing lots of new songs from Fasciinatiion, in addition to favorites from their critically-acclaimed catalogue. The tour begins in Des Moines, IA on July 27th, 2008. Tickets will go on sale for these shows this week.

Fasciinatiion is a culmination of nearly four years of writing and recording, a process that has always been a wholly democractic one for The Faint. After the release of the band's lauded fourth record, Wet From Birth, The Faint – Todd Fink (vocals), Joel Petersen (bass/guitar), Clark Baechle (drums), Jacob Thiele (synthesizers), Dapose (guitar/bass) – spent the next year on the road across the globe. They returned home to Omaha in 2005, where they began work on their newest venture – Enamel – a recording-and-art studio to take the place of their former workspace, The Orifice. Once built (another project The Faint undertook completely on their own), they began the long process of writing new material, and, once enough songs had been amassed, eventually made the decision to produce the record themselves. Working on their own without any time constraints, the songs went through many recorded incarnations before finding their final forms. The result is the best album in the band's career, a record that is the purest culmination of The Faint's brilliant musical instincts, ideas and aesthetic, with each member contributing equally to its creation.

Fasciinatiion is an album that draws on many defining facets of The Faint's sound, while remaining completely different from anything else they've put out. A record whose themes include predictions and the future, tabloid culture, the allure of what may never be, childhood lost and more, Fasciinatiion sounds as if it's been beamed in from a satellite whose sole purpose is observing, and making sense of, the details of every day existence. In certain ways, the album is the most mechanical and precise of the band's work: Todd's voice sounds less human than ever before; the bass lines are more mangled, keyboards spiral and squeal out of control; electronic pings and stabs invade the melodies; the lyrical anxiety and disdain of previous albums pervades almost every song on Fasciinatiion. Opener "Get Seduced" is The Faint at their best, the song’s critique of celebrity culture matched with one of the finest choruses they've ever written. First single "The Geeks Were Right" draws on the tenets of futurist literature and sliding, siren-call guitars. "Fulcrum and Lever" marries ambient noise with space references, alienation and a stuttering, flexing beat, while "Mirror Error" explores identity and consciousness within its perfect, propulsive electro-pop, its choruses swirling high and taking Todd's voice up with it. Closer "A Battle Hymn for Children" flinches with nervous rhythms against resentment of the future to be inherited and keyboards that sound like flailing voices (or is it flailing voices that sound like keyboards? On Fasciinatiion, one can never tell).

The tracklisting for Fasciinatiion:
1. Get Seduced
2. The Geeks Were Right
3. Machine in the Ghost
4. Fulcrum and Lever
5. Psycho
6. Mirror Error
7. I Treat You Wrong
8. Forever Growing Centipedes
9. Fish in a Womb
10. A Battle Hymn for Children

The tour dates:
7/27/08 Des Moines, IA @ Peoples Court
7/28/08 Sioux Falls, SD @ Ramkota Annex
7/29/08 Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
7/30/08 Salt Lake City, UT @ In the Venue
7/31/08 Boise, ID @ Big Easy Boise
8/1/08 Vancouver, BC @ Commodore
8/2/08 Seattle, WA @ Showbox at the Market
8/3/08 Portland, OR @ Crystal Ballroom
8/4/08 San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore
8/5/08 San Francisco, CA @ Grand Ballroom
8/7/08 Los Angeles, CA @ Henry Fonda Theatre
8/8/08 Los Angeles, CA @ Henry Fonda Theatre
8/9/08 San Diego, CA @ Soma
8/11/08 Austin, TX @ La Zona Rosa
8/12/08 Dallas, TX @ Palladium
8/14/08 Atlanta, GA @ Variety Playhouse
8/15/08 Carrboro, NC @ Cats Cradle
8/16/08 Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
8/17/08 Philadelphia, PA @ Trocadero
8/18/08 New York, NY @ Terminal 5
8/20/08 Worcester, MA @ Palladium
8/21/08 Toronto, ON @ Opera House
8/22/08 Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre
8/23/08 Omaha, NE @ Soko Auditorium

The Faint-The Geeks Were Right (DIOYY Remix) (MP3)