Funeral Club – In The Fire

Funeral Club In The Fire

The success of previous releases from Funeral Club has been their ability to create something evocative of dusty, mysterious times, there’s something other worldly and elegant to their song craft and its showcased brilliantly on opening track No Trace of Me which begins with a slow, sinister arrangment of awkward eerie banjo before Raymond Richards’ drums arrive alongside Jenny Andreotti’s vocal, which here recalls Nancy Sinatra being produced by David Lynch. This, seemingly conflicting stylistic conflagration, works wonderfully on the next track A Soapbox Serenade which has an almost jaunty European flavour, grimy electric guitar and Jenny cooing like a chanteuse over the top.

There’s a definite American West influence to Heavenly Bodies, drums seem to be barking out the backing vocals of Rawhide at times, but Jenny’s ethereal voice drifts through these familiar arrangments with a ghostly charm, her husband Joseph’s guitar sunset orange and – in its way – a fitting duet to her smoky vocal quality. Meanwhile Bones In The Ground has a fruity swagger and pleasingly daffy percussion, like Beirut going through a wander in the desert and starting to hallucinate, and when Josh Chamblee’s saxophone arrives it’s such a shame that the track fades out.

We Little Women has a toe-tapping, head-nodding rhythm, coasting along like Kermit the Frog and Fozzie Bear before sliding – alligator-like – into slower, duskier refrains, Raymond’s organ sneaking about in the bushes before that jaunty skip pipes up again. The title track is a jazzy, slippery instrumental, Chamblee’s saxophone elegant and regal over the shimmering cymbals and cautious, suspicious banjo.

There’s a surprisingly Grace Jones-like quality to Every Hideous Intention, its drums and saxophone combine into a Roxy Music-like glitterball, the sort of slinky supper club lounge disco that Ferry and Eno specialized in creating. It’s a brilliant left-turn for the record, yet still utterly in keeping with the atmosphere and style the band have cemented over the preceding six tracks, and it fits Jenny’s voice wonderfully, allowing her to weave a Kate Bush-like spell over the dreamlike arrangment. After such a brilliant track the final song Sleep To Dream is a little bit of an anti-climax, it has a end of the night, 3am kind of feel to it, as if just coming out of a drunken reverie and realising there’s a long walk home to follow, and should be followed by the sounds of the band beginning to pack up and the feel of the once dark bar being plunged into light.

A magnificent EP full of dark corners, masterful arrangments and seductive melodies, performed marvellously by a band who know how to craft vivid, cinematic and enjoyable music. This is a huge leap forward for the band.


God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.