Over the last year and a half, the Dublin post-punk/garage rock band Fontaines D.C. have built up quite a bit of buzz in their homeland and elsewhere in Europe just on the power of a handful of singles. There was the bouncy debut of “Liberty Belle,” the anxious and intense “Hurricane Laughter,” and the double A-Side single of “Chequeless Reckless” and “Boys In A Better Land,” the former continuing the snarling post-punk of “Hurricane Laughter” while the latter felt like a long-lost, propulsive Britpop single. People took notice, including Partisan Records, who announced today that they have signed the band. That presumably means there’ll be more new music on the way, and today the group has also shared the first taste of that via their new single “Too Real.”
The latest from Fontaines D.C. is another promising track, a discomfiting churn that drops the listener into an instrumental free-fall a few times over before it builds to a climactic conclusion featuring frontman Grian Chatten demanding “Is it too real for ya?” The song is accompanied by a video directed by Hugh Mulhern. Here’s what Chatten had to say about “Too Real” and its visuals:
I’d been reading a lot of poetry, specifically Preludes by T.S. Eliot — he makes your mind drift off into romanticism, and then quickly snaps it back into reality — and I remember I shot out of my chair and wrote down just the first line (“None can pull the passion loose from youth’s ungrateful hands”). Then when I came to the band with all the rough lyrics, our bassist Diego interpreted it as connecting to the sort of surrealist, idiosyncratic cyclical structure of Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake — where the first line is immediately engaging, you’re dropped right into the story, and then the ending leads right back to the beginning again. That’s something we wanted to capture in the video as well, which begins and ends with a wake scene.
So the circular nature of the song and video reflect the circular nature of the book, but also in a sense the surreal repetition of life. I think something strange happens to your soul when you experience something that you’ve already experienced before. We’re always longing for every step in life to be a new, developmental one. To accept that some things stay the same, something cracks within. That’s where surrealism comes in. The song’s chorus is accusatory, and also we wanted to be able to look people in the eye from on stage and sing this to them.
Check it out below.
Fontaines D.C. have also announced their first US tour, opening for Idles. Here are the dates:
05/08 – Albany, NY @ The Hollow
05/10 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
05/11 – Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel
05/12 – Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel
05/14 – Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
05/16 – Kansas City, MO @ recordBar
05/17 – Dallas, TX @ The Curtain Club
05/18 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda
05/20 – Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
05/21 – San Diego CA @ Belly Up
05/22 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Fonda
05/25 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
05/27 – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
05/28 – Seattle, WA @ Neumo’s
“Too Real” will be out physically on 12/21, with a B-Side called “The Cuckoo Is A Callin,” via Partisan. Pre-order it here.