a fir-ju well
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a fir-ju well


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The best kept secret in music


"SE Performer - April 2006"

“ (A Fir-Ju Well) having easily become one of the most well respected and popular rock bands. A Fir-Ju Well has recently been commanding serious attention on a national level. The bands follow up album El Terro not only earned a spot on the CMJ charts but broke sales records for any local or regional record release for any release at Criminal Records in Little Five Points Atlanta. The response for A Fir-Ju Well’s third effort absolutely helped land the band gigs with the likes of Cat Power, the Killers, British Sea Power, Feist, The Black Keys, and more recently at this years South by Southwest, We Are Scientist. In addition to South by Southwest, A Fir-Ju Well played over 150 shows last year. Including a headlining slot at the CMJ showcase, and performances at Music Midtown/Paste Magazines Rock and Reel Festival.”

SE Performer April 2006
- SE Performer

"Paste Magazine Record Review"

3 1/2 stars out of 5

"Were ever you hear A Fir-Ju Well's absolutely, there will be sure to be a party!" - Paste Magazine

"El Torero Reaches Top Sales at Criminal Records"

The result is a patchwork of twisted rock songs that have garnered comparisons to everyone from the Flaming Lips, Ween, Captain Beefheart and the Doors. Frayed Americana infused with bits of melancholy and surreal features culminates throughout the group's 2001 self-released debut, The Dangerous Life of Insects, a 2002 self-titled follow-up and now its most recent EP, El Torero released on International Hits. Acid-drenched melodies swirl and form an underlying aesthetic of pure artistic expression that marks all three efforts.

--Chad Radford--Creative Loafing"
- Creative Loafing

"Switching Things Up with A Fir-Ju Well"

The invitation is clear: “Come with us to see the show.” This line from “Neigh” by Atlanta’s A Fir-Ju Well could easily sum up the band’s mission in seven words. Those at an A Fir-Ju Well show quickly find an evening of full sensory overload through the constant switching of instruments amongst the band members, a streaming video backdrop, and a smattering of between-song audio filler. Depending on the spectator’s point of view, the stimuli-laden show is perceived as wildly inventive, or wildly distracting. Said one observer of a recent show: “It was a carnival up there.”

Whatever the audience’s reaction, the four members of pop-rock group A Fir-Ju Well, brothers Nicholas and Peter Furgiuele, Pete DeLorenzo, and Dennis Mora, maintain a definitive slant on how their music should be discerned: without boundaries. As DeLorenzo expresses, “We don’t want to put any limits on ourselves. We don’t even want not having limits to be a limit. Let the music evolve the way it’s going to evolve.”

The band has no designated front man, rather each song is conceived, composed, and directed by a separate individual. Says one member: “I’m playing in Pete’s band when it’s Pete’s song.” Stage commands include particular instrument assignment, sometimes DeLorenzo is on the keyboard, in other songs he plays the drums, an arrangement that’s do-able as the entire band is made up of multi-instrumentalists. The scramble on stage to exchange places between songs, or even intra-song, appears to literally be an adult version of musical chairs. But in this rendition, no man is left standing and forced out of the game.

They are all taking turns filling the roles of songwriter, musician, and director while building their catalogue of material. Such collaboration on a collective, yet individual, basis affords each a deeper understanding of the musical process. “Lots of artists limit themselves by thinking, ‘I’m just a guitar player,’” says DeLorenzo. A Fir-Ju Well is happy to embrace the entire scope that musicianship allows them.

It seems that constant evolution is one label befitting a group that eschews branding. Even their favorite part of the mix changes daily. A Fir-Ju Well doesn’t know yet what sound they are trying to achieve, they only know they want to “challenge people’s ideas of what music should be or have to be,” says DeLorenzo. “Why get stuck in one area? We’d love to break the boundaries, break the rules, and just be real, independent of anyone else’s ideas.” Future projects, beyond this month’s tour up to Canada and back down through the Midwest as well as the release of an eight-song EP, El Torrero, include dabbling with hip-hop groups and flirting with cultural peripheries. “The music is there for whatever capacity you want,” says DeLorenzo.

A Fir-Ju Well’s current sound format can be compared with the attitude found on Pink Floyd’s The Wall, or White Album-era Beatles. Their recordings flow from one track to another, alternating moods and tempos quickly. Song structure shuns the standard mindset of verse, verse, chorus, verse; the music instead reads as an amalgam of motifs and a blending of ideas. Considering the group’s democratic practices, the resulting montage is hardly surprising.

Lyrics are largely indiscernible, on both the latest recording and their first self-titled full-length as well as during their live act. Even so, the words are never the focal point; the music is what grabs and keeps the listener’s attention. The melodies float on their own recognizance, rendering vocals almost unnecessary. It’s a convenient loophole, as just when a song’s verbal subject matter does become apparent and lines ring clear, the tune changes direction, leaving its unsuspecting audience shrouded in mystery. The occasional audible snippets, such as “If you split your head wide open/You would see a million miles” from A Fir-Ju Well’s “Comfortably Dumb,” exemplify the unapologetic escapism of the group’s oeuvre.

A Fir-Ju Well achieves a pleasant rumination of rhythmic thought patterns, despite its apparent thematic incoherence or, perhaps, because of it. For example, the disc opener, “A Fancy Meal,” selects an upbeat, snappy pattern that morphs about ninety seconds along into a smoky shift of elongated notes. Track two, “Neigh,” breaks in without a shred of separation and starts bopping along at another happy pace, but it, too, soon slows itself down in instrumental self-reflection. Such bursts of intensity, layered with a deep vein of introspection, are indicative of the group’s entire manifestation.

“Neigh” appears again on El Torero, but with an attractive, confident solidarity. In fact, the disc feels tighter as a whole, cohesive in mindset with an increased maturity. The music is similar in structure and tone to the band’s earlier efforts but, to put it simply, better. El Torero only plays for around twenty minutes but it’s an enchanting, almost mystical set. While A Fir-Ju Well reads as rambling, El T - Southeast Performer

"Band of gypsies"

Undermining the traditions of commercial music by churning out a sound that's virtually unmarketable by any mainstream standards, A Fir-Ju Well is a fly in the ointment. The group functions less like a rock band than it does a band of gypsies; its members rely on their wits and abilities to sustain artistic freedom, rather than pander to the lowest common denominator. Turning urban refuse into advertisements for upcoming shows and packaging its early releases in hand-painted cases, the group excels with a flare for folk-art resourcefulness. - Creative Loafing

"The Technique"

They've shared a stage with Radiohead (Radiohead opened for them), toured Europe twice, founded a cancer research foundation, played for starving children in Ethiopia, performed duets with Paul McCartney and Julio Iglesias, serenaded more women than space and decency permits one to recount, brunched with the Queen of England and translated Latin for the Pope.

With this sort of resume under their belts, you'd think local Atlanta band a fir-ju well consisting of Nick Furgiuele, Peter Furgiuele, Pete DeLorenzo and Keith Xenos, would be an exceptionally cocky group of fellows. Surprisingly, however, they are amazingly reluctant to even hint of their widespread fame.

When eldest member Peter DeLorenzo was asked why people should attend their show instead of some other band's, he humbly responded, "Actually, their music probably is a lot better. There is no reason they should come to our show."

However, there must be some allure to this band; not just any band regularly plays to sold-out 50,000+ arenas. Maybe it is the massive success of their first two albums, The Dangerous Life of An Insect and a fir-ju well.

Maybe it is the fact that their soon-to-be-released album El Torero (aptly titled) will keep you as interested as a matador in the preservation of his dear life.

Maybe it is the simple truth that these guys are not 18-year-olds pissed off at their suburban parents, college kids complaining about the establishment they comprise or Fabio-looking New Kids on the Block wannabes trying to impress with their starched white silk suits.

These men are musicians, and each member is an all-around player. Their music stands for itself, and there's no need for hype or exaggeration. During a show, you will note that they switch up instruments multiple times, so the drummer will morph into the guitarist into the bassist into the tambourine player in a schizophrenic cacophony of melodious tunes.

What may seem chaotic in theory actually comes across quite beautifully, as each song is a testament to the band's talents and originality-and you will never run the risk of hearing two songs that even sound distinctly similar because each member not only plays each instrument, but also writes his own songs and sings, fostering a refreshingly unique vibe of unity and justice.

Indeed, in the land of a fir-ju well, every man is equal, just as the great grandfathers of our beloved country intended (much unlike, as the band said, the "menace to the world" that heads our nation).

Anyway, aside from serving their role as champions of justice and saviors of humankind, they sometimes take the time to entertain crowds at the smaller venues, as they often feel overwhelmed from huge crowds.

They have already played such Atlanta locales as the Cotton Club, the Earl and MJQ, drawing hordes.

They were recently signed to the major record label, "International Hits," and they are Southeastern Performer's cover story this month.

This Saturday, they make their first appearance at East Atlanta's Echo Lounge.

For this special tribute show to their favorite band, The Kinks, the normal ticket rate of $30.00 will be specially discounted nearly 75% for Tech students to the meager rate of $8.

The show starts at 10 p.m., and you can find directions to the Echo Lounge at www. echostatic.com.

I can't think of a show that's more worth it. You'll probably tell your kids about them one day.
- Georgia Tech College Paper

"Performer Mag Reviews a fir-ju well"

Recorded at Tree Sound Recorded and Mixed by Mark Rains Produced by A Fir-Ju Well and Dave Cobb Mastered by Rodney Mills

Reviewer -Samantha Findley

I have the biggest crush on a Fir-Ju Well's latest release. Over and over it plays in my stereo and there's nothing I can do to stop listening. I'm not sure whether its the catchy guitar riffs, wailing vocals, or simply my love for an accordion, but something special's a'twirling in my cd player. To begin, the album blends beautifully. From one song to another, you feel as if you are on a path headed somewhere, not standing still admist a collection of disconnected songs and random beats. The influence of each member is amazing; this isn't a band led by the hand of a single person. Instead, each musician contributes to the songwriting, and all members are able to play each and every instrument well.

The timing changes are well-executed. One moment you're dancing to a melody reminiscent of 60s psychedelic when suddenly you're surrounded by keyboards and harmonizing vocalizations that draw you into a carnival-esque world in which the drum beat carries you across a sea of trumpets, wind chimes, and violins. Soon a track change, ìOut of My Headî emerges, and with it a reminder of the glory days of Athen's Harvey Milk with its guitar-driven moments building to a break where your floating alongside the rhythmic vocals. ìBeautiful Waysî opens with a guitar solo that breaks my heart as did Lynyrd Skynyrd in ìSimple Man.î ìThe Stageî reminds me of days long past, sitting in my attic bedroom listening to the Pink Floyd albums my parents never knew I had, and ìTransmissionî is reminiscent of melodic storytelling a la Swervedriver's 99th Dream or Springsteen's Nebraska. Don't let the comparisons fool you, though. This is an incredibly original album that seemingly draws from a thousand assorted influences as well as a thousand independent thoughts. The quality of the album in itself is good. Recorded and mixed by Mark Rains at Tree Sounds in Norcross, Ga., the album has a raw feeling that almost makes me think I'm listening to vinyl. Each instrument comes shining through, with an emphasis on everything, not just the guitars or auxiliary instruments. If anything, the album seems to pay special attention to the vocals and drums, the two weaving in and out of each other in a harmonizing fashion. There's several moments when the wind chimes chill you to the bone. I'm not sure if this is keeping with the recent trend of mood-enticing effects found in such albums as Neutral Milk Hotel's Aeroplane Over the Sea or Black Heart Procession 2, but regardless the effect is good and your mood changes with the music.

Overall, this is an strong album that is beautifully chaotic and simplistically compelling. You should buy it. Seriously.
- Performer Mag

"A Fir-Ju Well"

It’s not often I lay it down hard and fast for a band I’ve never heard (and/or heard of) before, as it usually comes back to bite me on the ass in the form of being taken to task for sending someone out to see a group that flat-out sucked.

Nevertheless, once more into the breach, dear readers.

Atlanta’s A Fir-Ju Well may just be the first band I’ve heard in... well, weeks, I guess, that seem to live up to their hype.

The mere fact that Creative Loafing name-checked The Flaming Lips, Ween, Captain Beefheart and The Doors in a recent review was enough to make me skeptical to the point of avoidance, but I must confess that based on the two tracks I was able to preview, they may just be correct.

When terms like “acid-drenched” are bandied about, it’s usually time to start pulling out “The Albums That Last,” but this perplexing group might just have what it takes to create one of “those” albums themselves.

They offers visions of both Gutterball mainman Steve Wynn’s Highway 61 fetish and of CVB (circa 1984) aping Jim Morrison’s most theatrical flights of Brecht-ian fantasy. By the time you’re hit dead on with a Sgt. Pepper-worthy bridge (complete with pounding tack piano, almost-clean Fender guitars and cascading vocal harmonies), you’re drowning in a swirl of full-on throwback psychedelia.

Imagine Franz Ferdinand covering Piper At The Gates of Dawn. Then go see this band and yell at me later if I’m wrong. Tues., 8 pm, The Sentient Bean.

--Jim Reid - Connect Savannah


2001 LP "the dangerous life of an insect" self-released
2002 LP "a fir-ju well" self-released
2003 EP "el torero" international hits
2005 LP "absolutely a fir-ju well" international hits
2006 EP "gingo star" Fall 2006 release

Streaming mp3s can be found at www.3wk.com.
Tracks with radio airplay include: Neigh, Step Down, Cooking for Dust, Salem Sheep, #4, Soul Child (From "El Torero")


Feeling a bit camera shy


A Fir-Ju Well has emerged as Atlanta’s favorite rock and roll son. Playing shows at SXSW, CMJ, Noice Pop and with artists such as The Killers is bringing the band national recognition. A Fir-Ju Well has recently received praises from Paste Magazine, Performer Magazine, & Mtv2.

This last year the band has performed at CMJ Festival, SXSW, Paste Magazines Rock & Reel Festival, Noise Pop & Music Midtown. The response to there third album "Absolutely", has help landed them gig’s with The Killers, Cat Power, Feist, British Sea Power, Keene, and Low. The band’s popularity has opened up many notable rooms around the country such as North Six, Knitting Factory, CBGB’s, Gothic Theatre, Roxy Theatre, Fox Theatre, 40 Watt, & Exit In.

Crafting an art-damaged and intense presence, the group’s sound falls somewhere between Beatles White Album Area meets The Flaming Lips with a splash of The Kinks: sexy humble and unmovable. In person the group’s humble and soft-spoken demeanor instills a sense of alluring mystery. But on-stage A Fir-Ju Well explodes with energy, sweat and grit for an undeniable presence.
Never ones to hang on to the same instruments for too long, on-stage each member of the group moves and hurdles from station to station, swapping out guitar for bass for drums for voice. As a result the group’s multifaceted musicianship culminates in dense and cerebral rock mantras that are hard-wired to both the head and the heart.

The group’s unparalleled live performances and fluid song writing have delivered A Fir-Ju Well out of Atlanta and onto the rest of the country’s indie avenues. Coming off of playing over 200 tour dates this year and continue to fill all the notable rooms with in Atlanta. Absolutely( International Hits Records, 2005) is their third and most critically acclaimed release to date charted on the CMJ’s top 100. A Fir-Ju Well is on the rise.