Queens up-starts Freelance Whales are the coolest band to feature the glockenspiel since Cake. But the experimental pop is so much more than a weird assortment of instruments, a point they’re ready to prove with a new record contract and the official release of their debut LP Weathervanes.
To those unfamiliar with the band, a press release perfectly described the fivesome’s simple and homegrown sound.
“To call them multi-instrumentalists might be a little overdone. The kids in Freelance Whales are really just collectors, at heart. They don’t really fancy buffalo nickels or Victorian furniture, but over the past two years, they’ve been collecting instruments, ghost stories, and dream-logs. Somehow, from this strange compost heap of little sounds and quiet thoughts, songs started to rise up like steam from the ground.”
You can expect lots of strumming, instruments like the banjo and sleigh bells and plenty of lighter than air harmonic vocals and playing that creates an effervescent sound that is as mature and powerful as it is unbelievably catchy. The album’s story best demonstrates their unique musical spin. Weathervanes tells the story of a young boy falling in love with a girl. A ghost of a girl, apparently, and the album relates the tale of such an elusive love story.
The album’s songs have more or less been together since January of this year. In fact, the album was recorded just a few days after the band played in an old Staten Island farm colony. Since then Freelance Whales has played everywhere from your typical club stages to subway platforms. Thankfully, they have now taken to playing more normal venues, and you can catch them in the tale end of 2009 and beyond with the likes of a bunch of other up-and-comers, like Surfer Blood, Fanfarlo, and Bear in Heaven.
Weathervanes is slated for a March 2010 release on Frenchkiss/Mom + Pop Records (the band has previously self-released the effort). Stay tuned for a tracklist and more tour dates. In the interim, enjoy their song “Generator (1st Floor)” below.
Freelance Whales 2009/2010 Tour Dates:
12/17 – Cambridge, MA @ T.T. The Bears *
12/18 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall *
01/13 – Cleveland, OH @ Case Western Reserve University
01/14 – Chicago, IL @ Schuba’s Tavern #
01/15 – Bloomington, IN @ The Bishop
01/16 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Brillobox %
01/21 -Washington, DC @ Backstage @ Black Cat ^
01/22 – Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie ^
* = w/ Fanfarlo
# = w/ Surfer Blood
% = w/ Bear in Heaven
^ = w/ Animal Tropical