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Blue October: Foiled

Genre: Alternative Rock
Label: Universal

In the 6th century B.C., the words "Know Thyself" were carved in stone on the oracle-shrine of Apollo at Delphi in Greece. These two words change everything when heeded. Blue October's Foiled is an auditory journey into this ancient human directive. The album's music is hallmarked by insightful, thoughtful lyrics and melodic hooks. Instrumentally Blue October's music is reminiscent of Simon and Garfunkel, Coldplay and Death Cab For Cutie. Lead singer, songwriter and guitarist, Justin Furstenfeld's vox sounds like Neil Young and James Blunt. And, like them, Justin often uses soft and gentle vocals to convey words that impact the listener harder than the heaviest of thrash or the deepest wails of the blues.

An intimate and powerful song, "Hate Me" taps into feelings of loss, realization of mistakes and the struggle to let go. But ultimately it's about selfless love on both sides of a relationship. As the song remembers, "While I was busy waging wars on myself you were trying to stop the fight..." the main character realizes the best thing for this person he loves is to lose them and to "Hate me so you can finally see what's good for you..." For the instrumental delivery in this song, a slow soaring violin accents words, creates mood and blends in with the choruses.

An acoustic guitar and violin introduce the haunting and progressive sound of "Let It Go." It's followed by the aerial, ethereal and soaring "Congratulations." And just when you're peacefully lulled, the sweltering beat of "Drilled A Wire Through My Cheek" straps you into the seat of a hard rock ride. I like the way the songs flow into one another through the use of mood-setting segways and song order. All five band members contribute to the beautiful vocal harmonies, creating a well-rounded presentation.

The album comes to a close with "18th Floor Balcony," a peaceful living-in-the-now song. It captures precious moments of joy, love and satisfaction. With an uplifting and drifting chorus, this soulful love song made me smile. It's followed by a true hidden track that starts with the words "I lost a piece of me and you..." It's a treasure as Justin sings with a lone piano accompaniment. Hopefully this isn't just in the prerelease but is on the final album itself.

Emotion phobic people may not like this album, but in truth music is filled with emotion, mood and sentiment in one form or another. It's the ability of the artists to stir feelings inside the listener that produces the legends of rock. With sophisticated, quality songs like "Hate Me," "Drilled A Wire Through My Cheek" and "18th Floor Balcony" Blue October pushes the envelope with a rich, sweeping style. There's one thing for certain ... these songs will be talked about and valued for years to come.

Catchy melodies and intricate instrumentals are not the only things that make this album so brilliant. The stark honesty of the lyrics completes the picture. Justin's songwriting is more than intelligent. It shows a deep understanding of human nature. The songs on Foiled are about real people and their inner battles and struggles to relate to one another. This is an album of great substance. It's moving, motivating, forgiving and ultimately hopeful. Blue October delivers songs in three dimensions: your body moves to the music, it captivates your senses and it feeds your soul. There are so many facets in this album that it almost demands that you take your time, listen close and enjoy the depths and breadth of each and every song.

Added: April 6th 2006
Reviewer: Janice French
Related Link: Visit Blue October Online
Hits: 5516
Language: english


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