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FONTAINES D.C.

Fontaines D.C.

Romance

    Fontaines D.C. announce details of their highly-anticipated fourth album, Romance. Romance is the band’s first album with producer James Ford and is without doubt their most assured, inventive and sonically adventurous record yet. It’s set to build on the success of the Dublin-made, now London-based band’s acclaimed 2022 album Skinty Fia, which reached number 1 in the UK and Irish album charts and saw the band receiving a host of accolades including “International Group of the Year” at the 2023 BRIT Awards.

    Heralding Fontaines D.C.’s latest creative (r)evolution is the explosive lead single “Starburster”. Inspired by a panic attack lead singer Grian Chatten suffered in London’s St Pancras station, the song is punctuated by sharp feral intakes of breath. Its propulsive beat and unrelenting lyrics establish self-destruction as fantasy before a brief moment of sobering clarity when the drums fall away and Chatten moves from spitting, almost-rap into an almost-psalm, his baritone rich and dreamy. It’s accompanied by a cinematic music video from director Aube Perrie (Megan Thee Stallion, Harry Styles, The Hives) that captures the song’s cathartic intensity to brilliant effect.

    Romance is Fontaines D.C.s most ambitious, expansive record yet, its 11 tracks constellating ideas that have been percolating among Grian Chatten (vocals), Carlos O’Connell (guitar), Conor Curley (guitar), Conor Deegan (bass), and Tom Coll (drums) since they released Skinty Fia in 2022. These ideas crystalised while touring the U.S. and Mexico with Arctic Monkeys as the five band members shared music and found a throughline with artists that deftly build out their own sprawling creative worlds: the attitude and aesthetic sheen of artists like Shygirl and Sega Bodega, the bolshy sonic palettes of hip hop and heavy metal, Mos Def, A$AP Ferg, OutKast and Korn. They had time apart to build more singular visions for what future music could be: O’Connell went to Spain’s Castile-La Mancha and later became a new father, while Chatten spent time in LA, and Deegan in Paris. They laid deeper roots in London. Each member spent time pushing their boundaries – experimental riffs, chord progressions, and far-flung lyrical references without intentions for a record. After wrapping up the US arena tour in Autumn 2023, they spent a month writing together again, three weeks of pre-production in a North London studio, and a month in a chateau close to Paris, sleeping among studio equipment, completely immersed.

    Of the album’s title, Conor Deegan says, “We’ve always had this sense of idealism and romance. Each album gets further away from observing that through the lens of Ireland, as directly as (Mercury Prize-nominated debut) Dogrel. The second album (the GRAMMY-nominated A Hero’s Death) is about that detachment, and the third (Skinty Fia) is about Irishness dislocated in the diaspora. Now we look to where and what else there is to be romantic about.”

    Expounding on the theme, Chatten recalls Katsuhiro Ôtomo’s anime Akira, where the embers of love develop despite a maelstrom of technological degradation and political corruption around its characters. “I’m fascinated by that - falling in love at the end of the world,” he says. “The album is about protecting that tiny flame. The bigger armageddon looms, the more precious it becomes,” while O’Connell adds “This record is about deciding what’s fantasy – the tangible world, or where you go in your mind. What represents reality more? That feels almost spiritual for us.”

    The sonic evolution of the band, who bared their teeth in early records with antagonistic punk sensibilities, is an ascent into grungier breaks, dystopian electronica, hip-hop percussion, and dreamy Slowdive-esque textures that may surprise fans. The shoegaze touchpoints first pressed on Skinty Fia unfold on Romance like a purpling bruise. But any “retro aesthetic”, as Chatten describes it, is left behind. Reflecting on the impending release, Chatten says, “We say things on this record we’ve wanted to say for a long time. I never feel like it's over, but it’s nice to feel lighter.” The fantasy is felt for better or worse, and Fontaines D.C. welcome either end of oblivion.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Romance
    2. Starburster
    3. Here's The Thing
    4. Desire
    5. In The Modern World
    6. Bug
    7. Motorcycle Boy
    8. Sundowner
    9. Horseness Is The Whatness
    10. Death Kink
    11. Favourite

    Fontaines D.C. / Massive Attack / Young Fathers

    Ceasefire

      Fontaines DC, Massive Attack and Young Fathers have announced the pre-order release of an exclusive, limited edition vinyl record in support of Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) emergency operations in Gaza and the West Bank.

      *The 12” vinyl only release, features material from Fontaines DC, and Massive Attack/Young Fathers, and a ceasefire sleeve design by 3D of Massive Attack. 

      The reverse sleeve of the 12” features words written on a hospital whiteboard in Gaza by Doctors Without Borders medic Dr Mahmoud Abu Nujaila – words which went viral on global social media - depicting the desperation of medical professionals and civilians in Gaza. Tragically, Dr Nujaila was killed in a strike a few weeks later.

      "WHOEVER STAYS
      UNTIL THE END
      WILL TELL THE STORY,

      WE DID WHAT WE COULD.
      REMEMBER US"

      Despite repeated deadly attacks on its staff, medics, surgeons, and aid conveys, Doctors Without Borders volunteers continue to offer critical support to the civilians of Gaza.

      Fontaines DC, Massive Attack and Young Fathers have donated their music in full support of the incredible Doctors Without Borders staff working in Gaza today, as a statement for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and the West Bank, and in solidarity with the Palestinian people living under a brutal military occupation.

      Fontaines DC, Massive Attack & Young Fathers will donate 100% of the profits from this promotional venture to Médecins Sans Frontières (UK - charity number: 1026588) emergency operations in Gaza and the West Bank. The total donation is expected to be in excess of £150,000.

      3D (Massive Attack) said: "The hourly scenes of horror in Gaza, with hospitals and schools bombed to dust and innocent civilians, journalists and doctors killed in unspeakable numbers has been made so much worse by more than ten weeks of abject political failure.
      We're in awe of the Doctors Without Borders medics who place their lives on the line to help innocent civilians in Gaza. The ceasefire EP is a tribute to them, and their incredible ongoing work in truly indescribable circumstances. We stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine”

      Fontaines DC said: “Fontaines DC join millions across the world in demanding an immediate ceasefire and a permanent end to Israel's brutal occupation of Palestine. Since October, Doctors Without Borders have been on the ground in Gaza, where every human is an IDF target, risking their lives to give vital care to the thousands injured by Israel's indiscriminate attacks on the starving and defenceless. We feel utterly helpless in what we can do at this point however we do hope our small contribution to this record can raise some desperately needed funds for Doctors Without Borders in Gaza. Ceasefire Now. Free Palestine”

      Natalie Roberts, MSF Executive Director said: “After more than two months of war, Israel’s unrelenting and indiscriminate strikes on Gaza have caused unprecedented and catastrophic levels of civilian harm. Nowhere is safe. Hospitals that are overflowing with the sick and wounded are coming under fire or being raided by Israeli forces, killing doctors, health workers, colleagues. Our teams continue to do what they can without even the basic guarantees of safety. We desperately want to do more, but for that we need an immediate and unconditional ceasefire.
      Huge thanks to Massive Attack, Fontaines DC and Young Fathers for all their support.”

      *Copies have been packed using different combinations of coloured vinyl and sleeves. All orders are selected at random.

      2020’s A Hero’s Death saw Fontaines D.C. land a #2 album in the UK, receive nominations at the GRAMMYs, BRITs and Ivor Novello Awards, and sell out London’s iconic Alexandra Palace.

      Now the band return with their third record in as many years: Skinty Fia. Used colloquially as an expletive, the title roughly translates from the Irish language into English as “the damnation of the deer”; the spelling crassly anglicized, and its meaning diluted through generations. Part bittersweet romance, part darkly political triumph - the songs ultimately form a long-distance love letter, one that laments an increasingly privatized culture in danger of going the way of the extinct Irish giant deer.


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Barry says: Fontaines D.C are back! The incendiary Irish quintet bring us another slab of scathing post-punk, snapping percussion and wry, political lyricism. This time sees the band draw in elements of psychedelic electronica and gothic pop while still retaining the quintessential melodic grit that made their previous outings so adored.

      TRACK LISTING

      1 In ár GCroíthe Go Deo
      2 Big Shot
      3 How Cold Love Is
      4 Jackie Down The Line
      5 Bloomsday
      6 Roman Holiday
      7 The Couple Across The Way
      8 Skinty Fia
      9 I Love You
      10 Nabokov

      Fontaines D.C.

      A Hero's Death/I Don't Belong

        Barely a year after the release of their hugely acclaimed debut album 'Dogrel', which earned a Mercury Prize nomination and Album of the Year 2019 at both BBC 6Music and Rough Trade record store, Dublin’s Fontaines D.C. have returned with an intensely confident, patient, and complex follow up album. 'A Hero's Death’ was released on 31st July 2020 via Partisan Records – it arrives battered and bruised, albeit beautiful - a heady and philosophical take on the modern world, and its great uncertainty.

        The 7” features two tracks from the album – “A Hero’s Death” and “I Don’t Belong”. I

        TRACK LISTING

        1. A Hero's Death
        2. I Don't Belong

        Fontaines D.C.

        A Hero's Death

          Barely a year after the release of their hugely acclaimed debut album 'Dogrel', which earned a Mercury Prize nomination and Album of the Year 2019 at both BBC 6Music and Rough Trade record store, Dublin’s Fontaines D.C. have returned with an intensely confident, patient, and complex follow up album. 'A Hero's Death' arrives battered and bruised, albeit beautiful - a heady and philosophical take on the modern world, and its great uncertainty. 

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Martin says: Following the moody brilliance of the universally lauded ‘Dogrel’ was never going to be easy. Such a weight of expectation! Add to that a relentless schedule that goes with maintaining the momentum of success and a lifestyle that stretches minds and bodies to the limit (all too often beyond) and Fontaines D.C. could well be forgiven for buckling under the pressure. They certainly weren’t immune. Instead of blunting their creativity however, they channelled the world weariness and cynicism into their music, giving darker breadth and depth to the snarl and vigour of their debut. Grian Chatten is as poetic and articulate as ever, his wry observations irreplaceable, but here they are shot through with defiant nihilism and a wish for independence, from everything and everyone.

          They cite the Beach Boys as an influence on this album, but, while their chopping, post punk growl certainly has added harmony and changes of pace for sure, this ain't surfing weather. Where they do throw in a ballad, the gorgeous drunken drawl of “No” that closes the record, it's under leaden Dublin skies. The glorious, rolling sneer of “Televised Mind” and the tortured glam of the title track are perhaps other standouts, but then this album is full of them. All killer, certainly that.

          ‘A Hero's Death’ is absolutely and identifiably Fontaines D.C., it couldn't be anyone else, but it’s a leaner, more layered and brooding upgrade. If ‘Dogrel’ was a victory, ‘A Hero's Death’ is a reflection on the cost. It’s just magnificent.

          TRACK LISTING

          A1 I Don't Belong
          A2 Love Is The Main Thing
          A3 Televised Mind
          A4 A Lucid Dream
          A5 You Said
          A6 Oh Such A Spring
          B1 A Hero's Death
          B2 Living In America
          B3 I Was Not Born
          B4 Sunny
          B5 No

          After a handful of singles (all of are included here), one of the most talked about new bands of the last 12 months finally release their debut album. Their visceral pop has drawn comparisons to Idles amongst others, but what really stands out and sets them apart is their roots. Straight from the off, there is no doubt where they’re from; Irish through and through. Their hometown of Dublin is a constant reference point throughout from it’s literary past to modern day life in the city. Considering the band have only actually been a band for three years, this is a remarkably assured debut that’s hard to ignore.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Andy says: One of the year's most eagerly awaited albums did not disappoint when it arrived in April. A punk/post punk rock'n'roll band who actually sing about stuff, this record hits with the power of an early Smiths, Arctic Monkeys or even Oasis (more in attitude than anything else). It's like a poem to Dublin, getting out as much as revelling in, and singer Grian Chatten is the most authentic frontman we've heard in a long time.

          TRACK LISTING

          1 Big
          2 Sha Sha Sha
          3 Too Real
          4 Television Screens
          5 Hurricane Laughter
          6 Roy's Tune
          7 The Lotts
          8 Chequeless Reckless
          9 Liberty Belle
          10 Boys In The Better Land
          11 Dublin City Sky


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