Eric Bachmann’s a pretty reliable songwriter. Not everything he does is great, but between his early Archers Of Loaf days to Crooked Fingers — I never got that into Barry Black — he’s composed arresting, deeply felt, interestingly textured music and a good, Neil Diamond-esque Prince cover. The shift from Archers’ rambunctious indie rock to Crooked’s darker, masculine, poetic Americana was graceful, smart. Crooked Fingers are about to release album five Forfeit/Fortune, the first since 2005′s Dignity and Shame. In addition to Bachmann’s current backing band, he’s joined by Silver Jews’ drummer Brian Kotzur, DeVotchKa’s Tom Hagerman laid down strings, and Neko Case added vocals to the duet “Your Control.” On galloping album track “Phony Revolutions” he’s accompanied by horns, eerie vocal sampling, and a storyline that involves red lanterns, bamboo, and, right, a phony revolution.

Can anyone translate? You can listen to the old hits over at Crooked Fingers’ Myspace.

Forfeit/Fortune is out 10/7 via Constant Artists. Bachmann & Co are supporting Okkervil River on some dates:

09/27 – Austin, TX @ Emo’s Outside $
09/30 – New Orleans, LA @ The Republic #
10/01 – Birmingham, AB @ Workplay, Birmingham #
10/02 – Athens, GA @ 40 Watt #
10/03 – Wilmington, NC @ Soapbox #
10/04 – Richmond, VA @ The National #
10/06 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall #
10/07 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall #
10/08 – Northampton, MA @ Pearl Street #
10/09 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr. Smalls #
10/10 – Buffalo, NY @ Tralf Music Hall #
10/11 – Montreal, QC @ Saints #
10/12 – Toronto, ON @ Phoenix #
10/14 – Chicago, IL @ Metro #
10/16 – St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club
10/17 – Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room
10/19 – Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater
11/06 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge
11/07 – Boise, ID @ Neurolux
11/08 – Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey
11/09 – Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge
11/11 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
11/12 – Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour
11/13 – San Diego, CA @ Casbah
11/14 – Tucson, AZ @ Plush

$ w/ Okkervil River and Man Man
# w/ Okkervil River

[Photo by Gary Isaacs]

Comments (6)
  1. E-Bach’s had that solo album after he stayed in that van for awhile… but yeah from White Trash Heroes, Toasts, to The Rotting Strip and Black Black Ocean- Bachmann was so pre-blog… in a nut’s shell: looking forward to the album

  2. Oh man, Barry Black was some good shit. You should revisit the first album and the second half of the second one. If you want to dog on Bachmann, I would suggest that song about “spreading her legs and flying away” from the first Crooked Fingers album is the place to go. Otherwise it’s pretty consistently great.

    What does it mean to be pre-blog? Is that code for old? I’m so pre-blog.

  3. Can’t wait to hear the rest of this record. The cover art – YIKES

  4. Octavio Paz  |   Posted on Sep 11th, 2008 0

    Darker revolution phony masculine.

  5. Greydon Clark  |   Posted on Sep 11th, 2008 0

    The Crooked Fingers came out of the gate shit hot; in the early ’00s they put on fantastic live shows and released interesting records. I don?t know what happened with Dignity and Shame, but Bachmann decided it was time to write extremely boring modern rock songs. Based on this audio turd, he has not rediscovered the spark. Sad.

    • Billy the Kid  |   Posted on Sep 12th, 2008 0

      Since when does a 6 minute acoustic song like “Man O’ War” (from EB’s last solo record) fall into the “modern rock” category?

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