Foxing-Dealer: A Beautiful Emo Dream

Foxing-Dealer

Release Date: October 30, 2015

Length: 45 minutes

Specs of my pressing: Single LP, Gatefold, Blue (Tour Pressing), Limited to 600

I would just like to start this review out by saying that this was one of my favorite albums released in 2015. I have seen Foxing live twice already and plan on seeing them even more because they put on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen.The whole band puts everything they have into their performances and singer Conor Murphy’s emotion behind his lyrics is heavily felt. This comes through greatly on their first album The Albatross; through every track you can hear the emotions that Conor is feeling and it is easy to tell how much he cares because of the rawness of his vocals. Dealer, however, you don’t feel that emotion as much. This album is a lot more precise, calculated, calm, and different, but not in a bad way. There are still songs that you can feel Conor’s emotion, it just doesn’t show through as much here.

This is an album where the track-listing is very important. Many songs such as Glass Coughs, Eiffel, and Coda flow from the ones before them and make the album sound like one cohesive piece. In fact, on the second side of this album, tracks 7-10 sound like one hugely-packed song. It starts of with the slow and extremely calm Redwoods, then flows into the climactic and emotional songs Glass Coughs and Eiffel, and finishes back off with the soothing instrumental of Coda. This signature emotion that only Conor Murphy can really bring comes through heavily on Glass Coughs and Eiffel, and also the track Night Channels as well. This whole album is very different than The Albatross but I believe it shows a good progression of the band. Dealer is very clean and you can tell a lot of time, effort, and emotions were poured into this, but they come across as more calculated and planned out rather than just letting everything go and letting emotions run free. The instrumentation of this album is amazing to say the least. On some tracks like Three On a Match and Indica the instruments are simple and let you focus more on the lyrics of the song. However, on other songs on this album like Laundered , The Magdalene, and Glass Coughs the backing instruments are really what the song focuses on. Every instrument is doing something completely different but they all flow together to create a beautiful, cohesive piece. They have music added in from clarinets, french horns, saxophones, violins, and much more that really take this album over the top.

Another interesting thing about this album is that apart from Glass Coughs, none of the lyrics are very catchy. This album is more like a piece of art, something y0u really sit down with and focus on. Dealer was made for those days where you are trapped inside and just want to listen to something, or nights where all you want to do is drive and have something beautiful to focus on in order to drown out all of your other thoughts. The lyrics are very interesting and not something that would get stuck in your head right away, but something that you would listen to and become intrigued so you would want to listen again and again. If you want to listen to something that will completely surround you with a sense of tranquility, then this is definitely something that you should check out.

Now, let’s talk about the pressing quality of this album. There isn’t anything super special quality-wise about my pressing. It isn’t 180 gram pressed super well but, that being said, it does still sound very good. I was very able tell the difference listening to this album on vinyl compared to listening to it digitally. The difference was subtle, however. There were a few songs where the guitar was clearer or where I could hear the slight addition of an instrument or background vocals that I didn’t notice digitally. The pressing quality didn’t blow my mind, but it was still definitely very good and worth checking out and listening to on vinyl format.

IMG_3409IMG_3411

As for add-ons, this pressing of the album was a definite hit. It is a gatefold record with beautiful art on the inside; the lyrics on one side and the acknowledgements on the other. I was extremely impressed with the cover and backside of this album as well. The title and track-list are only visible when light hits it and I thought that was very creative and haven’t seen that on an album before. The sleeve that the record comes in has a beautiful design that fits well with the rest of the artwork. Also, my specific blue pressing of the album was only available to buy at Foxing shows and only 600 were made so that definitely adds to my appreciation of the pressing that I own.

IMG_3424

Overall, this is definitely an album to check out. It’s dreamy, it’s clean, it’s downright beautiful. If you do have a record player then this would be a great addition to your collection. I have posted links below including where you can stream this album online for free, where you can buy my specific pressing, and a live session of Foxing’s older music that I find extremely intriguing. Dealer is definitely different than Foxing’s debut album, but it’s a good change that comes with progression and growth. This album truly is an emo lover’s dream.

Pressing quality: 7/10

Packaging: 10/10

Where to find this:

Audiotree Session- https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLunIrIqYqs7-IYQKcCxhyJEgNgWIYTfoZ

Dealer on Bandcamp- https://foxingtheband.bandcamp.com/album/dealer-3

Buy the Tour Pressing- https://www.discogs.com/Foxing-Dealer/release/7677047

Advertisements

Let’s Get Started

Alrighty then, I figured since this is my first post on this blog I have wanted to make for a long time, I should talk about what I want to do with this blog and give a little background about myself.

So here we go:

I am a class of 2019 student at Grand Valley State University, a college in Allendale, Michigan and I’ll just go out and say it, I’m a music addict. Yes, I know, I should be ashamed of myself, but the first step is admitting it right? You may be completely shocked and asking yourself “Oh my gosh, does his mother know?” or “How can he even function in life?” and those are both very valid questions. I would like to answer both by saying yes, my mother does know and also I have no clue how I function, but that’s for another blog another day. This blog, on the other hand, is dedicated to sweet, sweet vinyl.

I have had an unnatural attraction to music ever since I can remember. I remember as a little kid plugging in crappy headphones to my Spongebob Discman and jamming out to The Beatles-1 and Queen-II, both are greatest hits albums and truly are great. I would sing all of the lyrics as loud as possible wherever I was and I didn’t care who heard. (I really should have cared because my voice was, and still is, deafening.) I don’t know why I love and care about music so much. It could be because I can hear something that someone has completely poured their heart and soul into, or it could just be that I have horrible focus issues so I listen to music all the time because it is something that I can tune in and out to. Whatever reason I have for loving it so much, I do and I am happily obsessed. Ask me about a band and I’ll probably talk your ear off about something related and soon you’ll wish you could turn my volume down like on your phone when you accidentally play a video or song out loud in public. (Trust me, it’s happened to the best of us.) As I have mentioned a lot already before, I have always loved music but it wasn’t until I got a record player that I think it started to become an addiction.IMG_3375

While looking up addiction on Google, I got the definition “the fact or condition of being addicted to a particular substance, thing, or activity” and I think that is definitely true, but it is missing one important thing. Money. In my mind, I think of an addiction as something that you need to have and it eventually makes you spend hard earned moolah on it. A lot. And trust me, in the past two years I have owned a record player, I have definitely dropped more than enough cash on music. I guess it’s not a bad thing to spend all your money on. Mom and Dad, if you’re reading this then you should just be happy that I’m not blowing my money on something illegal and “fun”. (Trust me, whatever you are thinking that I’m talking about, just know that I don’t do it probably just out of straight fear of the consequences that probably won’t happen. Good job Mom and Dad, you guys raised me well.) Most of the spare cash I earn goes to buying a new album on vinyl that I have wanted and maybe the occasional latte. Luckily, the latter doesn’t happen much anymore since I stole the espresso machine from my house and put it in my dorm room. So that gives me even more money to spend on records! I mean, or it could give me more money to save for “real life stuff” but pshhh, who needs that!?

“Why do you spend money on all of this stuff you can just stream on Spotify or illegally download somewhere?” That is a very great question. A lot of people say that music sounds better on vinyl and though I do agree with that, that’s not the main reason I buy records. I got into vinyl a while back because I think it is just super awesome. I love having a big album cover that I can hold in my hands, taking out a beautiful record, and putting the needle down on it. It is just a ritual that makes me very happy, hearing that popping and crackling right before an album starts is exhilarating to me. Another reason I think is important for buying things on vinyl is that I am helping support a band that I truly care about. For many small bands it is really hard to make a living because of all of the illegal downloads and the little money they get from people streaming their music. So that means every penny counts. I enjoy being able to help these people who have helped me get through many things in my life by just paying for something that I would have wanted anyway. Vinyl is just the way to go and that is why I am extremely happy that I did get a record player that Christmas of 2013.

So, what do I want to do with this blog? That is the question that we, or at least I, have all been waiting for. The answer is that I’m not exactly sure yet, but what I think I would like to do is feature a record that I own on vinyl and I think others should check out whether they have a record player or not. Most of these albums are probably going to be ones that I have bought recently or ones that I own that have a good story behind them. Throughout  blog posts, I will talk about things that I like and don’t like about the album and the certain pressing I own of it. I am not going to rate the album itself, but I will try and come up with ratings for two important parts of the pressing I own of the album: pressing quality and packaging. I will try my best to add as many pictures I can of the album because I know that is something I would love to see but they probably won’t be the best of quality because I don’t have a good camera. I will also try and talk about where I heard about the album, where I picked it up, and where it is available to buy. (If it is still available for purchase.) There will be a lot of vinyl featured on this blog hopefully at least once a week, so I hope you guys enjoy it. If you don’t have a record player then that doesn’t mean this won’t be for you. Who knows, maybe I’ll inform you of your next favorite album? If you have gotten this far I would just like to say thank you  so much for reading and I hope you keep coming back.

Your friendly neighborhood Vinyl Junkie,

Hunter Burin