Often hailed as the "British Arcade Fire," Fanfarlo has always sounded (to me) more like a unique high-pop band hell bent on making strings and horns a necessary component for every band that hopes to compete. Never have those sentiments rang more true than on Fanfarlo's Rooms Filled With Light
, a glossy, jumpy, all-over orchestral pop opus that plays like Win Butler tried to write a Joy Division record, but got confused by everything released independently in 2006. The production is smooth, featuring Simon Balthazaars beautiful/unique tenor weaving in and out of synth keys, strings, and other grandiose riffage, but the motifs are as varied as Crayola colors.
At first the variety threatened to make the whole affair disjointed. "Replicate" and "Shiny Things" (when they were released as free singles) totally sounded like different albums, the former being more classical Fanfarlo textures, and the latter more of a pop spectacle. But together, in the context of the rest of the songs (including a few other off-beat tracks like the horns of "Tunguska," the free-form jam "Everything Turns," the ) it's evident that this is an album of Fanfarlo misfits and explorations that as a whole, feels right. It goes to show that Fanfarlo can be a bit more versatile than some of the bands they're so frequently stacked up against, even though they aren't quite as well known yet, while still holding it all together with one, cohesive, personal quality.
And be sure to watch our Fanfarlo Concert video