The Felice Brothers craft an impeccable piece of art with the release of Undress, their first album in three years! Through mighty storytelling and poetic imagery; a nod to the wit of Mark Twain, the spirited folk-rock band from New York reflect upon the ills of modern American society.
Cut live to tape with minimal overdubs, founding members Ian Felice, James Felice and newcomers Will Lawrence (drums) and Jesske Hume (bass) present us with a series of intimate portraits: “Every song is a story,” said James Felice. “On this album, everything was a bit more thoughtful, including the arrangements, the sonic quality and the harmonies.”
Driven by vocal harmonies, electrifying piano ripples, and a sax solo for good measure, their album-opening title track is upbeat, but words like ‘slaughter’, ‘genocide’ and ‘crimes against humanity’ catch us off-guard. Felice asks,“When will we find the light of day?”
“Poor Blind Birds” exudes a sense of helplessness, as Felice sings, We live in a world we can’t understand / Poor blind birds if we’re anything / And the world is not what it seems to poor blind birds. Influenced by the poems of William Bronk, its wistful melody and hauntingly beautiful lyrics make it one of the stand-out tracks on the album!
Undress may be dark in its portrayal of the current social and political landscape, but it does not lose faith in the goodness of humanity and hope for the future. Simply listen to the compelling track “Salvation Army Girl,” which tells the tale of a female superhero and her power of charity.
With each listen, every magnificently-constructed song on this album gets stronger and more purposeful. It is American folk storytelling at its finest!
The Felice Brothers have already kicked off their North American tour and will be wrapping up on June 27th at the Bluebird Theater in Denver.
Listen to Undress on Spotify!