by Charles Hoyt (@charlie_ben_h)
Soft Fangs’ new album, Fractures, brings a feeling of spatial closeness. John Lutkevich plays every instrument on this record, but there is something about Lutkevich’s voice that feels like he’s singing directly to you in a small room. It may be the whispery intonation of his voice that brings this on. Although some of these songs have a softer acoustic quality, Lutkevich is able to transition into a sound that is reminiscent of label mates Horse Jumper of Love. Some of the quieter tracks have a country-esque sound to them, such as the piano driven “Apple Picking,” or the organ that is being played on the closing track, “We Don’t Live Together Anymore.” A major theme throughout this record is the feeling of hunger. Soft Fangs’ new album, Fractures, is a wonderful rock record that makes you think about the current state of food security as well as economic security and other current social issues.
Many songs on Fractures include lyrics that talk about being hungry and the lack of food available to them, as well as people taking what they have for granted. On the song “Honey Colony,” Lutkevich sings, “Buzzing your apartment, wishing I had brought somethingto eat, for you or me.“ A few lines throughout this record really stand out as they follow this theme exactly, on “Apple Picking”, the words “Taking the fruit for granted, while other people starve“ are sung. The most important of all the mentions of food is shown on the seventh track, “Weed Spiders,” “Tongue is dry, and no one is listening / Got no bread to fill my stomach up / But what do you know about struggle?” The lyrics add to the recurring statement on this record of more well-off people taking the food availability and economic security that they have for granted.
Fractures is a rock album first and foremost and is able to touch upon serious social issues such as hunger and police brutality (on the track “No Cops”). It is an album that feels relevant and important for the current time period without being a blatant protest record. Altogether Fractures is a well put together rock album that can be listened to time and time again. This album is one of my favorites of the year so far and should appeal to fans of Horse Jumper of Love or (Sandy) Alex G.