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Future Islands – On The Water (2011)


Future Islands – On The Water (2011)
Location: BALTIMORE, Maryland, USA
Origin: Greenville, NC, United States
Genre: Minimalist / New Wave / Pop
Release date: October 11, 2011
Record Label: Thrill Jockey (Thrill 285 / http://www.thrilljockey.com/catalog/index.html?id=105388)
01. On The Water   4:52
02. Before The Bridge   3:59
03. The Great Fire   3:15
04. Open   1:28
05. Where I Found You   5:44
06. Give Us The Wind   4:06
70. Close To None   6:19
08. Balance   4:07
09. Tybee Island   3:17
10. Grease   4:35
11. (Untitled)   0:54
J. Gerrit Welmers
William Cashion
Samuel Herring
Past members:
Erick Murillo
Samuel N. Ortiz-Payero
Website: http://future-islands.com/
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/futureislands
Future Islands' romantic synth sound scales new heights with On the Water, the Baltimore trio's most ambitious and fully realized statement yet. Built around a song cycle exploring love, loss, and memory, their latest album finds the band continuing to deliver pounding rhythms, swelling melodies, and undeniable hooks - but finding new ways to probe inner space and tug at hearts.
Convening in March 2011 in Elizabeth City, NC's historic, waterfront Andrew S. Sanders House, vocalist Samuel T. Herring, bassist William Cashion, and keyboardist Gerrit Welmers lived together in a space that served as both studio and sleeping quarters. The band used this tranquil retreat to refine their most reflective and mature batch of songs to date, adding new material in the process.
What emerged is a lush yet visceral album about two parallel journeys--one physical and one psychological. On the Water's narrator offers enough detail that their story feels personal, yet open enough that any listener can inhabit each twist and emotional pang as their own.
Travelling on foot, we seek something - an exorcism, an epiphany, an ending. Memories wash across us as in life: non-linear, linked by emotional resonance rather than conventional chronology. And so, the pain of letting go channeled by "The Great Fire" collides with a moment's fleeting serenity in the Eno-esque "Open"; the triumphant rallying cry "Give Us the Wind, " despite its confident declaration of individual strength, remains a mile away from final chapter "Tybee Island." It is there the song cycle ends, and what is discovered in "Tybee Island" will be as different as the lives lived by each person who finds their way to this album.
On the Water may unearth aural memories as well. The mind may flash upon our first encounters with New Order's "Ceremony," David Bowie's "Heroes," or The Cure's Disintegration, memories which, are continually reborn and re-imagined in the context of the here and now. And as the song-cycle's narrator comes to terms with his own memories, his singular journey collapses into the collective experience of album-closer "Grease." It is here that the "I" of the nine previous songs collapses into the "we" of Future Islands, now singing the literal journey of the people who came together by the ocean to deliver these songs into our ears. Far from just a narrative trope, the ocean played an integral role in On the Water's creation. The bulk of the album was recorded with waves pounding sand mere feet away. The album opens and closes with field recordings made by the band on a nearby dock, and one pivotal track, "Tybee Island," began with vocals recorded on the beach (subsequently fleshed out in the studio with additional instrumentation).
The ocean inhabits every note of these songs. On the Water is an addictive ride that demands repeat listens, eagerly awaiting the test of time. To produce these results, Future Islands fleshed out its sound with the additions of cello, violin, marimba, and field recordings. As with their 2010 breakthrough album In Evening Air, On the Water was produced by frequent collaborator Chester Endersby Gwazda, perhaps best known as producer of Dan Deacon's Bromst. Noted guests include Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner, who provides vocals on "The Great Fire," and Double Dagger's Denny Bowen on live drums and additional percussion.
For all its undeniable weight, On the Water is not a sullen concept album. Every track on the record works both as a contribution to the whole and as a stand-alone pleasure, evident in the insistent throbs, addictive melodies, and stirring vocals of tracks like "Close to None," "Balance," and first single "Before the Bridge."
Make no mistake, On the Water is a record that aims to both break your heart and heal your wounds. 

- Wave Like Home (Upset the Rhythm - August 25, 2008)
- In Evening Air (Thrill Jockey - May 4, 2010)
- On the Water (Thrill Jockey - October 11, 2011)
EPs and Singles:
- Little Advances (self-released - April 28, 2006)
- Split CD-R with Moss of Aura (self-released - January 6, 2007)
- Split 7" with Dan Deacon (307 Knox Records - August 5, 2008 - purple vinyl, limited to 1000)
- Feathers & Hallways 7" EP (Upset the Rhythm - April 15, 2009 - white virgin vinyl)
- Post Office Wave Chapel 12" remix EP (Free Danger - February 2010, limited to 500)
- In The Fall 12" EP (Thrill Jockey - April 2010 - Blue Vinyl, limited to 1000)
- Undressed 12" EP (Thrill Jockey - September 2010, limited to 1000)
- Split 7" with Lonnie Walker (Friends Records - November 2010, limited to 1000)
- Before the Bridge 7" single (Thrill Jockey - July 19, 2011, limited to 750)
As Art Lord & the Self-Portraits:
- Searching for a Complement (self-released - August 2003)
- In Your Boombox (self-released - October 2003)
- Ideas for Housecrafts (self-released - February 2004)
- Snail (self-released - 2005)
- "Sad Apples, Dance!" featured on Compulation Vol. 2: Songs from North Carolina (Poxworld Empire)
- In Your Idea Box digital-only "best-of" release (307 Knox Records - September 2008)

Music Videos | Tour History
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File:Future Islands at the Beachland Tavern in Cleveland.jpg

Future Islands performing at the Beachland Tavern in Cleveland, OH (February 18, 2011, 23:40) / Author: Roger Zender


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