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Monday, 30 September 2013 09:20

Hear and Now: Stream the new album 'Day of the Dog' by Ezra Furman

Hear and Now: Stream the new album 'Day of the Dog' by Ezra Furman
Written by Erin Frank
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Ezra Furman may look like a scruffier version of Conor Oberst, but on his second solo album, "Day of the Dog," he howls away all prepossessions of indie folk and proves himself to be one of rock 'n' roll's native sons.

Recorded in Chicago with Furman's touring band the Boy-Friends, "Day of the Dog" is scheduled for release on October 8, 2013 by Bar/None. Furman's relationship with Bar/None is only a few months old, but it began with Bar/None's re-release of Fumran's first solo album, 2012's "The Year of No Returning." Prior to this album, Furman spent six years recording with ensemble Ezra Furman and the Harpoons, whose reckless sort of garage pop was recently re-released this year with 2007's album "Banging Down the Doors." If Ezra Furman and the Harpoons was mostly bong rips and bravura, solo Ezra Furman is characterized by simple, noisy arrangements that pay liberal and candid homage to the beast that has come to be American rock 'n' roll.

A native of the Chicago suburbs, Furman takes the blues heritage of his hometown seriously. "Day of the Dog" bristles with classic horns and dirty guitar and the agita of Furman's punk-styled vocals. It's a loud, wild mutt of a record, and it's terrifically fun.

"Tell Em All To Go To Hell" curls licks of fat sax around a bursted riff and the defiance of a rolling stone, while the eponymous "Day of the Dog" is a bluesy ballad and the album's most traditional offering. "Anything Can Happen" begins a lot like Van Morrison's "Madam George," "Slacker Adria" minces along with the strut of the Velvet Underground, and "At the Mall" is a doo-wop ditty that begins with a story about getting laid in a dressing room and culminates in the line "I am broken, wide open, bleeding everywhere."

Furman could mimic or affect if he chose, but for the most part, he performs as though he is being ecstatically exorcised. He makes a racket, a scene, a glorious spectacle of himself, and thankfully, it feels like he's taking everyone else along for the ride.

"Day of the Dog" will be released on October 8, 2013 on Bar/None Records.

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