Michael Feuerstack is a veteran storyteller. His narratives roam between weary themes of love and regret and yet Feuerstack, whether under the name Snailhouse or otherwise, makes each record he creates sound refreshed and different. His lyrics are witty and jarring and calming; somehow all at the same time.
For the majority of The Forgettable Truth, the songs are built on a subtle and smooth instrumentation that nestles amongst the complexities of Feuerstack’s lyrics. Joined by Pietro Amato, Peter Xirogiannis, Mike Belyea, Little Scream, Nick Cobham and Sebastian Chow, the band creates a sort of woven covering that warms the album. The steady pace of “Clackity Clack” and the closer “Monrovia,” highlighted by some beautiful string work by Chow, are prime examples of how Feuerstack matches the intricacies of his lyrics with complex but muted musical additions.
Where the album strays from the calmer demeanour of these mentioned track, The Forgettable Truth is at its most exciting. “The Devil,” a surprising fast-paced number, and the playful attitude of “Lamplight” are, though in different ways, equally energetic.
In December, Feuerstack’s “Blue Light II” was featured on the Ho! Ho! Ho! Canada VI compilation. As a bare and intimate offering, “Blue Light II” captures, suitably, the winter blues. “Blue Light” as featured on The Forgettable Truth is outwardly much different but grapples with the same emotions and ideas as found in “Blue Light II.” With a rather upbeat clean electric guitar and drums combo, “Blue Light,” like II, says that the blue light lets you take it slow. The real trouble is finding your own blue light.
It took me numerous replays of the opener “Receiver” before I could get to the rest of The Forgettable Truth. Early in the song Feuerstack sings, “Thanks to you, I haven’t been the same since you made me want to die. Die on the crutches of time.” Though he’s later joined by Little Scream for an unsurprisingly wonderful combination, it’s with this line and its ironically poppy delivery that you are so warmly welcomed into The Forgettable Truth. Sure, it’s a dark line but damn is it catchy.
Long after The Forgettable Truth finishes playing, Michael Feuerstack’s music will linger. Mark it down as another strong volume in Feuerstack’s mighty collection.
Top Tracks: “Receiver,” “Blue Light”
Rating: Strong Hoot (Good)