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Fanfarlo: Five Essential Albums

by Kara Manning
A A

Fanfarlo's blissful EP of last year, The Sea, was a sparkling pop prelude to the London band's bold third album, Let's Go Extinct, which is released on February 11 via Blue Horizon. The group sidles even further away from its early folk roots and unearths more danceable grooves on this release, as on the sunny single "Landlocked." They have a lengthy North American tour this spring, including two New York dates in late April at Bowery Ballroom and Rough Trade.

FUV and The Alternate Side have been longtime fans of Fanfarlo, visitors to Studio A in 2009 and 2012, so we asked bearded bassist Justin Finch if he might list Five Essential Albums that have influenced him and, aside from a thwarted attempt with Steely Dan, his Fanfarlo cohorts:

Steely Dan, Aja (1977)
Steely Dan is possibly my favorite band of all time. And this may be my favorite record of theirs. Although that depends on what day you ask me. The perfect mix of pop and jazz. I wish the rest of the band could get down with Steely Dan with me, but it ain't happening.

Jeff Wayne, Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of the War of the Worlds (1978)
My brothers used to scare the living s**t out of me when I was a kid with this record but I think it inspired my love of all things science fiction and I have probably listened to it a couple of times a year, every year, since i was a child. It's a musical extravaganza.

Bruce Springsteen, Nebraska (1982)
I can't get down with any other Bruce Springsteen album but this is one of my all time favorite records. This isn't the Bruce who sings the power rock songs to empower the blue-collared man. This is the Bruce that is just trying to survive in some midwest town, stay out of jail and come to terms with this bastard of a life. Recorded on a 4 track portastudio, it's one of the most serene piece of storytelling i've ever heard.

Depeche Mode, Violator (1990)
All Depeche Mode records should be listened to and cherished, in my opinion, but this is definitely their masterpiece. They make music for the lonely like The Smiths. If you're feeling down or vulnerable, Depeche Mode will make you feel all right ... and sexy.

Electric Light Orchestra,  A New World Record (1976)
Another band that my older brothers introduced me to as a child. They were like Wayne and Garth in their bedroom listening to these guys and I've always loved them. When I got older it became clear to me this was my favorite LP. It has a science fiction vibe that really inspired Fanfarlo.

Justin Finch of Fanfarlo
January 2014

Fanfarlo's 2014 North American Tour:
3/24/14 San Diego, CA, House of Blues
3/25/14 West Hollywood, CA, Troubadour
3/26/14 San Francisco, CA, Great American Music Hall
3/28/14 Portland, OR, Dante’s
3/29/14 Vancouver, B.C., Venue
3/30/14 Seattle, WA, Tractor Tavern
4/1/14 Salt Lake City, UT, Urban Lounge
4/2/14 Denver, CO, Larimer Lounge
4/4/14 Kansas City, MO, Middle of the Map Fest
4/5/14 St. Louis, MO, Duck Room at Blueberry Hill
4/7/14 Minneapolis, MN, Triple Rock Social Club
4/8/14 Madison, WI, High Noon Saloon
4/10/14 Chicago, IL, Lincoln Hall
4/11/14 Columbus, OH, Skully’s Music Diner
4/12/14 Millvale, PA, Mr. Smalls Theater
4/14/14 Detroit, MI, Shelter
4/16/14 Toronto, ON, Lee’s Place
4/19/14 Cambridge, MA, The Sinclair
4/22/14 New York, NY, Bowery Ballroom
4/23/14 Brooklyn, NY, Rough Trade
4/25/14 Philadelphia, PA, Underground Arts
4/26/14 Washington D.C., U Street Music Hall

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