Music Review

Film School – Field

todayAugust 30, 2023 265

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By – Kristi Houk

Recommended if you like: Beta Band, Slowdive, Lush, The Daysleepers

Music is seasonal.

Example: I only listen to Led Zeppelin in the summertime and spring is reserved for a heavy rotation of XTC. As the first hint of autumn seeps in, I tend to lean toward more introspective, somber, heavier fare. Lucky for me, and hopefully you, Film School’s latest release, Field checks all of these boxes. The band’s 7th album is an almost perfect balance of succumbing to nostalgia’s clutches and somehow still living in the present. Musically, it envelops you like a thick fog but, wait for it, when the heaviness clears, the result is heavenly. You just have to be patient and ride it out.

Field is equal parts shoegaze, dream pop, and psych rock (there’s even spoken word in there) It’s Beta Band meets Slowdive—full of lush production (downright grandiose at times)— See “Up Spacecraft” with its layered guitar swells, dramatic synths, and hushed boy/girl vocals. A 2023 Goth’s dream.

Thematically, the album seems to wrestle with the uncertainty of change and being ok with it. Like the seasons, change is inevitable and often uncomfortable.  This record isn’t afraid to sit with that vulnerability, however dark. The opening track, “Tape Rewind” beckons the listener to join in the revelry. This song is a spot on example of the tension between what you thought was going to happen, what is, and no matter what the outcome, no regrets.  Vocalist/Guitarist Greg Bertens, summons us with a pounding guitar lick that strongly supports the mantra like refrain, sung by vocalist Noël Brydebell: “Don’t fear/It’s your body/Desire/There’s no shame here.” I am all for body positivity.

 

Hyperbole notwithstanding, Field is easily one of the best records I’ve heard so far this year.  Maybe I’m just being nostalgic.

Here’s to cooler nights, softer hearts, and never looking back.  Now, go put on those headphones.

Favorite Tracks: “Tape Rewind”, “Don’t You Ever”, “Up Spacecraft”

Written by: kristi houk

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