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I saw Fur at Donovan's in Mexicantown earlier this year as a three-piece and was impressed with their sound. Though there seemed to be a physical/visual wall between the band and the audience, the sound was engulfing. Driven and dark, with lead vocalist/guitarist Ryan O'Rourke's downward slouchy gaze adding to the darkness but defying the drive, the band was connected and full. I really enjoyed what I heard. I downloaded their debut EP last week, and throughly enjoyed what I heard there, too. For a first release it sounded precise, well-mixed and professional--not at least due to the fact that they recorded at Tempermill Studios in Ferndale. Okay, I'm going to forgo the restraint and admit that I think it's one of the best debut releases I've heard from a Detroit band in the past few years. The songs are all energetic and moody, a kind of mix between Black Mountain and Interpol. I love the fact that bass and drums are heavy in the mix, and the vocal sound pushes Ryan's unique voice into an integral instrument instead of a showy top layer (especially in the second track). Drummer Zach Pliska is a very solid player, and the songs emphasize this. He leads in the opening track, "Here's to the Angels (West-Coast Swag)", which explodes into this oddly catchy distorted rock tune. The second track, "Pretty Thoughts", really illustrates Fur's connection to dark psychedelia, tom-heavy and distorted, but then adds this weird Killers-esque synth part (by newest member Johanna Champagne) that I actually really dig as an addition. The closer, "Foxtrotsky", is more atmospheric but builds on the toms again. "Foxtrotsky" is what I think Muse might sound like if Muse had any talent, creativity, rawness and edge. Michael O'Connor's bass lines in this one are spectacular, a saxophone just barely makes it into the raging end of the song, and the music is just well-written all around. Kudos to Fur for putting out an incredible first release. I really look forward to hearing and seeing more in the (near) future!

You can download Fur's EP for free on their website, and you can see them at the Belmont in Hamtown on June 25th (Friday), with Rogue Satellites, Beekeepers, and The Savage Seven. You can also be friends with them on their Facebook. - Julia Stephenson, rethink.d

"In My Ear"

Detroit's post-punk outfit FUR. drags their moody chords out in just the right way, with vocals that make us think of Interpol, or an energetic Joy Division. We can't stop listening to "Pretty Thoughts." You can download it (and the rest of their EP) for FREE before they release their new single (FREE again!) at the Belmont on June 25th with The Savage Seven, The Rogue Satellites and Beekeepers. Here's what's rocking FUR.'s eardrums: - Real Detroit Weekly

"fur. - sugarcoats - yeasayer - ginger tea - deerhunter"

And then, without knowing/hearing or checking other blog's back-pages for references - I opened up fur.'s page - and the incorrigable love I hold for the wavy bass grooves, screechy guitars and herky-jerky rhythms - all realms of what's commonly spat out (in bar-side commentary) as post-punk/no-wave/art-rock etc etc (forgive the tired genres) - sometimes you just have to go listen.... - Jeff Milo, Deep Cutz


If Ian Curtis had, um, hung around, relocated to Detroit, soaked up the ’90s garage fever and then made some more Joy Division records, they’d have resembled Fur. Or, perhaps, “Ve- nus in Furs.” - Metro Times

"JR Music Revue"

Fur is a newish up and coming Detroit Area based band. On their EP, they claim to be a 3-piece but have recently added a female keyboardist. With 1st listen of the 3 song self-titled EP, I didn't think they would be able to pull of the recorded compositions with the standard bass, guitar, drummer setup. I think the addition of a keyboardist will help them round out the translation in the long run.

In terms of sound, Fur deviates from the traditional Detroit blues-driven garage garbage rock and roll. They partake in more a clean sound and if I had to wager a guess, use primarily digital recording devices. It's nice to see something digitally produced (when it's done well) when being analog is trendy and all the rage. It provides a really sharp and clear capture of the different elements. If I had to nail-down Fur's overall aesthetic as being derivative of other bands, I would say a melting pot of Placebo, Muse, Bad Lieutenant, and a dash of Bauhaus.

I give Fur credit. They are tackling a genre/sound right now that noone in our fair city is even close to broaching. I am patiently waiting for their follow up EP due out this August - motorcityblog.blogspot.com

"Fur's Self-Titled EP"

Two years ago, Fur founders Ryan O’Rourke and Michael O’Conner began building the band out of its noise-pop origins. They took years of recordings and began crafting a sound. Wallowing through hissing drum loops and dissonant guitar tracks, they assembled what they wanted to unveil to the public. With drummer Zach Pliska joining the line-up, they set out to play the Detroit scenes. After certain modifications and a year of playing out, they decided to scrap the entirety of their songs and start over again.

Heading out to Tempermill studios in Ferndale, Fur began recording their new self-titled EP. With the addition of Johanna Champagne playing keyboards, they recorded three songs. I would like to state here that if this is what they have produced so far, I am thoroughly looking forward to their follow-up EP that will be out this summer.

The EP is very consistent in texture and tone, carrying throughout a pop sensibility hidden behind a postpunk veneer. The minor-chord-happy songwriting is strong, not meandering too long in any spots for the melody to break down. At many times, the one-string guitar melody accentuates the progression of the songs, like in Foxtrotsky (A great name, although it is not a fox, a foxtrot, nor a foxy Trotsky) where the vocals recede and the twangy melody climbs up and down the scale just as the other guitars crescendo into the payoff.

Smartly placed dissonant guitars and shoegazey vocals are blended into the whole of the music which adds an enjoyable layering wall of sound. The vocals are not the focus any more than the guitars are the complete sound. The experimental elements are not overdone making it very accessible and instantly gratifying. This EP creates a feeling of rushing towards obscured providence in a car with no headlights in the darkest part of night…and you can dance to it.

Download the EP here

Posted by Lance Mitchell on May 19, 2010 | 0 Comments | Permalink |
- motorcityrocks.com





Piecing itself from fragments of decade-old cassette demos and hard-drive accumulation, Detroit noise-pop quartet, Fur, began in 2008. Cut from manipulated film drones and hiss-laden drum loops, these samples laid the groundwork from which founders Ryan O’Rourke (vocals/guitars) and Michael O’Connor (bass/keyboards) would begin building the band. With the addition of drummer Zach Pliska, FUR began honing its sound with a series of local shows. After various line-up changes the band scrapped their catalogue of songs in 2009 and began rebuilding from the ground up.

The self-titled debut EP, a lush, minor-keyed trio of thinly-veiled pop songs was introduced in 2010, along with new member, keyboardist Johanna Champagne. This collection, available as a free download from furnoise.com or in a limited CD edition at shows, was recorded in the fall of 2009 with Jim Kissling at Tempermill Studios in Ferndale, MI.

FUR exudes a jarring but danceable swagger. Steady, mechanized percussion—reminiscent of, but ultimately more human than The Downward Spiral—announce clattering, reverb-drenched guitars and judiciously placed drones. Spacey synth and expansive chorus vocals brush up against MUSE, diffusing the EP’s more demure and sobering hook lines to strike a necessary balance between disconnection and catharsis. A video for the first single, “Pretty Thoughts” can also be seen on the band’s webpage. FUR is currently putting the final touches on its follow-up EP, slated for a summer 2010 release.