When You Walk Away by FUR
12 Nov 2021
If you are struggling to remember what decade we are in, listening to Brighton four piece FUR is only going to confuse you further. With 70s surf rock guitars, contemporary melodies and a vocal approach clearly influenced by a few big names from the last 50 years we are all over the calendar with this band but the question is - does it work?
This month FUR release their debut studio album When You Walk Away. The album fittingly opens with guitars and the guitars are in the most part what give this band their sound. That and the seemingly long string of guest vocalists that constantly pop up. When listening to the album for the first time I was just getting used to Julian Casablanca singing the odd line here and there when out of nowhere it seems the late legend Marc Bolan performs the entirety of The Fine Line Of A Quiet Life. Some listeners are going to grab hold of the unique qualities of FUR vocalist William Murray's voice whereas others are going to struggle to see past the similarities to other unique vocalists from the past. I fall in to the latter camp.
Regardless of who is singing though this record is full of catchy hooks and riffs that will get stuck in your head all day. She's The Warmest Colour In My Mind has got every ingredient needed for a radio hit and Anybody Else But Me has a chorus that you will end up singing whether you want to or not. A lot of what makes these songs work is the guitar play. Sometimes providing a catchy simple riff early on to set the stage for the track and elsewhere providing a backdrop for Murray's voice. Nothing particularly technical but well thought out and to great success. What I Am is an early surf rock tune with backing vocals straight off Pet Sounds and a well executed transition in style.
The sequencing of this record is well thought out with the highs and lows all in the right places. A great finishing touch is starting and ending the album with the same musical motif of When You Walk Away Pt. I and Pt. II.
If Britpop were invented in a Hawaiian beach hut in 1970 it would have sounded a lot like FUR. Their influences are undeniably broad but are equally identifiable. If you can get past that you will find some great tunes and smartly mapped out compositions that set the stage for FUR to have some real commercial potential. I definately struggle to listen to FUR without hearing a whole host of predecessors coming through far too strongly but that doesn't take away from the songwriting and a less concerned listener will appreciate that for what it is. The album is out now so please take a listen and let me know your thoughts.