Fat White Family: The release of “Feet”
Yes, the rumours are true, the boys are back in town.
Having shuffled all the way up to Sheffield, on more of an exile-based excursion as opposed to some holy pilgrimage, for the past two years Fat White Family now proudly announce their return – taking their rightful place on the golden throne of the Brixton music scene on top of what can only be described as debauchery mountain.
Not coming in quietly they have, within the space of two weeks, not only released a teaser trailer for their new album Serf’s Up(Domino Records) but have released the opening track ‘Feet’ with a video to go with it. Oh, and did we forget to mention they have also revealed two gig dates for the end of this month (which have already sold out) … yep they aren’t usurping your attention discreetly.
Prevailing all olds, Fat White Family’s dying embers have been kept burning by brothers Lias and Nathan Saoudi and founding member Saul Adamczewski. While the line-up of the band has changed slightly, listeners are still able to feast their ears on the glorious grooves of these maverick delights with the help of long-standing bassist Adam Harmer and the new-comer, multi-musician Alex White.
Their newest video, directed by C.C. Wade, is an exciting display of the new direction the band are taking, moving away from the disgusting and leaning towards the evocative vulnerability. Opening with a dystopian grey landscape, your eyes are invited to feast on broken relics that mimic great eras of absolutist control – from crumbling Roman architecture to omnipresent 20thCentury government-looking buildings.
The track compliments the dull despair of the backdrop with eerily whining guitars, before breaking into 80s electro-funk nostalgia, full of synths that are almost reminiscent of the likes of Grace Jones or Kraftwerk.
The viewer is then met with three streams of narrative swapping time-frames and costumes from a naked crusade to dimly lit meeting between army looking officials before the final a final battle on the frontline.
The overlaid sound of the track is just as alternating as the imagery, exploring how titillating funk rhythms can be complimented by heavy tin-esk drums and neo-classical violin. In this same way the video plays around with soft warm tones only to then contrast them with cold blues and greys, toying with its audience’s comfort in the ease of pleasant visuals with brutal blasts of war and the wielding of weaponry. As the video continues the figures become more surreal and animated, as the track begins to embark on a more animatronic with Lias’ typical vocals distorted by autotune.
With every member making a grim yet delectable cameo throughout the video, the surviving band members embody two sides of humanity: the power-hungry warmonger and the innocent decrepit.
This imagery in ‘Feet’ clearly plays around with your preconditioned expectations of FWF, violent destruction and brotherly affection.
By quite literally baring all, despite not being uncommon for the band, they explore different musical terrains creating a nuanced nakedness which encourages a more intimate interaction with the music that gives way for a vulnerability that the band has yet to reveal in their previous projects.
The listener is invited to join them on their journey – wherever their feet may be taking you – as opposed to dragging you (whether you enjoy it or not) through the turmoil of modernity.
‘Feet’ while perhaps being different to the Fat Whites we all knew and loved is a track that still withholds archetypal motifs while adding a fresh lascivious lick of paint. As the opening track for their newest album, Fat Whites prove are armed and ready to “once again set upon revealing the true face of God”.
It’s clearly the start of a new era, a dawning of a new world where old amalgamates with the new and where the serfs will rise.
Full track list forSerf’s Up (out April 19th):
‘I Believe in Something Better’
‘Tastes Good With The Money’
‘When I Leave’
The band will play at The Lexington on January 30thand 31st,2019.
Word By Aimee Williams-Maynard