I remember seeing Fatherson playing in dingy basements in 2010, interviewing them before the release of their debut album in 2014, and now here we are with third record Sum Of All Your Parts. Lets take a moment to appreciate the effort put in by Ross, Marc and Greg to release three albums in four years. That takes some doing.
Anyway, onto the music. This album sees Fatherson at their most adventurous and experimental. The band make a conscious effort to step out of their comfort zone throughout Sum Of All Your Parts. It doesn’t always pay off, but when it does the result is very rewarding.
Album opener ‘The Rain’ is a perfect example of that. From the opening bars, there’s a tantalising mystery to the instrumentation that paints a vivid picture. But we don’t len on that for too long. There are strokes of Fatherson’s contemporaries We Were Promised Jetpacks throughout, and perhaps the heaviest riff Fatherson have ever unleashed on their fans. The line has been drawn in the sand. Things have changed.
On ‘Making Waves’, there is a balance between the old and new Fatherson. By now, Ross’ vocal style is so recognisable that he should really consider patenting it; but it is counteracted by a far more fluid, relaxed approach to the instrumentation than we are used to. The guitar solo is a personal highlight: punchy, staccato notes are over emphasised by crisp drums to wonderful effect.
We’re no strangers to moments of tenderness from Fatherson, but ‘Oh Yes’ is a twist on the classic. I’m not convinced by the spoken word section in the middle, but I can only applaud the band for trying something different. And the rest of the track is so beautiful that they get away with it.
‘Reflection’ is a slightly more traditional Fatherson ballad-esque song. What really sets it apart from its predecessors though is the quality of Greg’s drumming. The pace of his playing should sit at odds with the rest of the instrumentation, but in fact it helps move the song along before it gets dull, without ever feeling too rushed.
Is this my favourite Fatherson album? Probably not. But it is their most important. Oh Sum Of All Your Parts, Fatherson have broken free of the shackles of their origins, and proven that they are capable of anything. And that really excites me.
Sounds Like… The start of a new chapter.