Fleet Foxes: Helplessness Blues Review (Three Takes)

6 Responses

  1. nwdave says:

    Interesting selection of takes on the album. I agree most with the first review, so take this with a grain of salt, but I think the second review sort of misses the point.

    For me personally, some of the introspective lines did resonate with me, and don’t come off as cheesy or forced. I’m thinking of Monetezuma and Helplessness Blues in particular. I don’t believe that the snowflake line was intended as a great lyric; I find it a little tongue-in-cheek and I think it was probably intended that way.

    While I’m not sure if it surpasses their self-titled album or the Sun Giant EP, this is still a stellar achievement. Frankly, since they set the bar so ridiculously high, it’s even more amazing they’d be able to follow up with such a solid album.

  2. jonbehm says:

    Listened to this a few more times on a road trip this weekend – I think if I did this again I would be inclined to agree more with Jeremy. Would probably actually rate it like a 70 or so

  3. Kevin says:

    Jeremy Hovda, I’ve got one word for you: jejune. And talk about mediocre high school journaling – “cell phones in church.” It’s these pretentious, thesaurus wielding reviewers like this that make me wonder why I read reviews at all. Granted, everybody will have their own opinions about art, but these songs are simply gorgeous. Rarely can an artist of group of artists summon the beauty of nature and translate it into music. Pecknold is definitely more introspective here – but he’s also very direct and relatable.

  4. Jeremy Hovda says:

    I wish that I liked this album. I had been looking forward to it for a long time. The Fleet Foxes have been one of my favorite bands for the past two years. I’ve paid to see them four times and have never been disappointed. But, I was (and am) disappointed by this album. I wish that I could ignore the grating lyrics and take pleasure in the melodies, but I can’t. However, no one should let someone else’s views, especially those of a pretentious thesaurus-toter, deprive them of their listening pleasure. That would be totally jejune.

  5. jeffort23 says:

    At one point or another in the three weeks of listening to this record, I’ve agreed with parts of all of these reviews.

    A fourth take:
    http://ludditestereo.net/2011/05/03/helplessness-blues-fleet-foxes-album-review/

    “You may need to spend significant time questioning and even disliking Helplessness Blues before it reveals its gifts to you, but given that its creation is forever connected with human suffering, that price is only fitting.”

  6. Angie (Miffed) says:

    Helplessness Blues is conveying more of the feeling than what they aim for in sound with that particular single. What a silly criticism and elementary jab. Just because they didn’t go all Frogman Henry on our asses does not mean these kindly gents didn’t evoke an intense sense of melancholy. I get an intense wave of the boo hoos within the first few chords. Every time. This is a beautiful, majestic piece of their hearts. So lift your boot and walk on. Dude.

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