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Fountains of Wayne – Sky Full of Holes

on July 29, 2011, 7:57am

Yes, the band that informed you that Stacy’s Mom, indeed, had it going on, is back with their new album, Sky Full of Holes. It’s been four years since Fountains of Wayne‘s last release, and the pop-rock band has taken that time away to create their latest disc of stories, and characters, but this time, the results seem more personal and aged. Like all their albums, you will find elementary rhymes and clever word play, but the usual presence of humor is missing throughout much of the disc. In the absence of laughs, you still are treated to great pop tunes, however.

There’s a bright track about getting drunk in “Radio Bar”, which includes some irresistibly enjoyable horns. “The Summer Place” acts as a great upbeat acoustic album opener, where lead vocalist Chris Collingwood sings, “At the summer place is so far away/It’s another state of mind.” Take note, the beach plays a reoccurring setting throughout the album.

They must have been in another state of mind when they penned “Richie and Ruben”. The odd single tells the tale of two entrepreneurs who just completely bomb with their investments. It’s an interesting and frankly funny tune. The eccentricity of it stays true to what most Fountains of Wayne songs are: stories about a day in the life of fictional characters. Many times, bad things occur to these poor people, such as the case in this song.

The band drops the humor gag for the most part in “Someone’s Gonna Break Your Heart”, the highlight of the album. The steadily paced semi-ballad seems poised for radio (if anyone listens to radio anymore). It’s a track that sounds fitting and natural, not only in this collection, but from the band in general.

Fountains of Wayne have been around for ages, but this is only their fifth album, so it feels foolish to say that the band is still growing. They know what they do well and they accentuate that time and time again. While the stories can get drawn out at times, there is still enough here to sustain a solid listen. Well worth the wait, gents.

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