Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Midday Show host Cheryl Waters, is “I’m Confused” by Handsome Furs from their 2009 album Face Control on Sub Pop.
A long while ago, I mistakenly attended The Teenagers show at Neumo’s. The show was awful, the crowd a stewing mess of adolescents, and the music a sort of monotone teen sludge I’d never been privy to. The entire evening would’ve been an entire waste if not for my first experience with viewing Handsome Fur, Wolf Parade’s Dan Boeckner’s side project with his wife Alexei Perry. Somehow this married duo managed to imbue their fuzzy, squawky blend of electronica with a sexuality that at times I’d found lacking in their studio releases. The bobbed and cavorted across the stage, leering at each other in a way that changed the music in a way that breathed a spastic sort of erotic way. On the Handsome Fur’s new album Face Control, the twosome has managed to move onwards from the static indy electronica of Plague Park (which I loved) replacing it instead with a fuller, more alive sound. “I’m Confused” dips and dodges around in the same playground as the best songs off Plague Park, but this time the locale is better populated. Guitar riffs possibly stolen from the mid-1980s carouse with thick, visceral bass beats, and Boeckner’s voice, still gravel-soaked monotony, seems to pulse with a liveliness unheard of on prior recordings. It’s a fantastic song and completely indicative of the direction this impressive album veers towards.
Handsome Furs have embarked on a European tour, starting this Wednesday in London, but they’ll be back in Seattle on June 5 at Neumo’s. You can keep up with the band via their MySpace and website. In the meantime, enjoy this video for today’s Song of the Day: