5/5 – An impressive debut by Dubliners remaining true to origins
Dublin Garage Punks, Fontaines D.C release highly anticipated album ‘Dogrel’ through Partisan Records. A high octane, no-nonsense, straight to the point statement, containing the almost-trademark instrumentation and vocal authenticity for which the band has become renowned.
The opening track ‘Big’ is one you will have no doubt heard repeatedly for the past several weeks and there’s a good reason for that. The track is a forceful proclamation of intent from the quintet, a perfect opener which paints a clear picture of the band, who they are, where they come from and what they aim to achieve through their music.
Sha, Sha’, ‘Too Real’, ‘Television Screens’ and ‘Hurricane Laughter’ all follow
suit with a similar up-tempo pace, each consisting of their own unique elements
making them easily identifiable from one another.
A real turning point throughout the record occurs when you land on track 6, ‘Roy’s Tune’, when the brakes are well and truly slammed on. In contrast to the first half of the album, this song is a soothing three-minute opportunity to catch your breath, that also allows you to really appreciate the clever and charismatic use of language and musical range this 5-piece has to offer. Grian Chatten’s story telling abilities effortlessly draws your ear. Combined with a lilting Irish accent, it’s pretty hard not to listen to what he has to say.
The remaining latter half of the record is not to be dismissed. Equally as good, if not better, tracks include singles ‘Chequeless Reckless’ and ‘Boys in the better land’.
To conclude, the album closes with an ode to the band’s roots in ‘Dublin City Sky’, throughout which you can genuinely feel the love and regard this band holds for its Irish heritage and culture.
A mature, honest and respectful account from five like-minded and proud individuals, Dogrel is an impressive debut album. Expect to see a lot more of Fontaines D.C.