It seemed like Calgary-based Women were bound to become a fringe phenomenon, considering their ability to cohesively meld post-punk and noise rock with The Zombies-esque deadpan harmonies and 60’s psych leaning guitar pop. Their talented ambitions were quickly cut short however, following an onstage meltdown, indefinite hiatus, and finally, the tragic death of guitarist Christopher Reimer in 2012.
Featuring the younger brother of two Women members, Faux Fur’s self-titled debut provides perhaps the most promising echo of the aesthetic and influences of Women since their sudden demise. Not nearly as suffocated by noise, Faux Fur do share a distinct interest in how many ways they can awkwardly bend and pace guitar melodies into beautiful creations crooned over by impassive vocals.
Early cut “Rough Palms” initially appeals itself with upbeat angled riffs and squiggly arpeggios before the band ultimately send their guitars into bizarre loose ends, all while maintaining a certain pop charm. Midway point “Burnt” leads with a lackadaisical guitar waltz for half a minute, shatters the sleepwalk with alarm clock riffs for another minute, and then gently slips back into the slumber for a gorgeous outro. A couple tracks later, “Discolouration” introduces itself with a bittersweet guitar part and helplessly defeated vocals, dissipates into a twinkling dream melody, and finally regains life with a march of sour chords and lingering reverb.
Over the course of 10 songs, Faux Fur continuously provide a reassuring sense of promise for people who enjoy pessimistic pop. Sound intriguing? Well then give it a go! Before you know it, they may be gone.