Fulton Lights - The Way We Ride (2008)

O Fulton Lights é formado basicamente por Andrew Goldman e junto a ele, uma penca de bons nomes colaboradores. Este belo álbum, The Way We Ride, é daquelas pérolas que ficam escondidas pela grande quantidade de lançamentos diários do universo independente (não estou reclamando), e ele está disponível para download gratuito via Catbird Records.


1. Fulton Lights to the Edge of Panic
2. The Way We Ride
3. Sideways Glances and Coded Speech
4. The Sin Makes the Man
5. Pen and Paper
6. Blood and Guts
7. We Hit First
8. I Love Your Point Of View
9. Everybody's Running From Something
10. Rest

DOWNLOAD [full album zip 320kbps MP3s]

"Fulton Lights' debut is a cycle of songs that are deceptively sweet-edged, but indelibly tough. They echo through the mind with a nostalgia that refuses to completely commit to the way we live." --John Szwed, author of biographies on Miles Davis and Sun Ra and the winner of the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Liner Notes (a book that came with the Jelly Roll Morton Anthology) **

(From Spin's "Hey, This is Awesome")"The man behind Fulton Lights, Brooklyn's Andrew Spencer Goldman, has sparked a smoldering slow-burner for his single, 'Fire In The Palm Of My Hand.' ...The smoky tune drifts on hushed vocals and a plaintive, pretty piano. It's a calm cocoon of a song, but Goldman makes sure that his nuanced debut doesn't become complacent by inviting some members of the boisterous underground rap group Dälek (among others) to help weave in such unlikely elements as minimalist hip-hop beats, an organ, and a vibraphone with more traditional guitar and piano."--Spin **

"Looped piano notes and a dusty trip-hop beat cast an unsettling spell in this cut from Brooklyn artist Andrew Spencer Goldman's debut as Fulton Lights... Underground maestro Oktopus (one-half of Dälek) co-produced the track (his fingerprints are all over those dissonant murmurs in the background), but credit Goldman's ghostly vocals and politically provocative lyrics for giving this hazy track a subtle power."--Entertainment Weekly **

"...This self-titled Brooklyn song cycle is a 10-track love letter to New York City's greatest borough. Goldman, an indie singer-songwriter who's recorded under a variety of guises including Maestro Echoplex and John Guilt, has a knack for melody; his hushed, impressionistic musings drift by in a slow dazzle of muted strings, keyboards and environmental ambience, courtesy of underground hip-hoppers dälek. It's as if a 25-year -old Neil Young was beamed down to a stoop in Bed-Stuy. But in contrast to the borough's fuggedaboutit reputation, there are no harsh edges here. Rather, Fulton Lightscaptures the city on the graveyard shift--coughing, sputtering, wheezing--both beautiful and vaguely threatening. And despite the downtempo moodiness and bittersweet nostalgia, Goldman's overall outlook retains a gentle optimism. And that takes chutzpah. Here's hoping he doesn't move to Queens."--Harp **

(3.5 stars)"...A suite of beautiful, ghostly songs in which acoustic pianos and string samples float over muted hip-hop beats as Goldman's soulful, whispery tenor shares tales of life in the city of New York. ...The tempos are glacial, the keyboard-based arrangements poking along to beats so slow they can be counted. Goldman is fond of swelling organ notes and softly played acoustic and electric piano chords, with strings adding accents here and there. His near-falsetto, near-whispered voice mutters lyrics largely concerned with urban alienation and philosophical ruminations. Actually, he shares many of his interests -- time and breathing, for example -- with Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon."--All Music Guide **

(Top of the Blogs)"...A carefully pulsing electronic folk album...Beautiful music for aghast city dwellers...Most warmly recommended."--Der Spiegel (Germany) [Translated from German] **

(3.5 stars)"This darkly beautiful waking dream, crafted with deft orchestration and soporific beats by Brooklyn-based musician Andrew Spencer Goldman, exists permanently in the witching hour, when you can close your eyes and somehow manage to feel alone in a city of millions."--AM New York **

(Editor's Pick) "Not without an astonishing sense of sarcastic humor as evidenced by “Thank God for the Evening News”, Fulton Lights have an epic progressive album that delves into hip-hop and indie pop with ambient backdrops cascading down all around. ...The lush arrangements and sparse minimalist textures set Fulton Lights into a spectrum all by themselves." --Smother Magazine **

"...A perfect blend of fresh sounds and traditional elements. They always say that cities are alive, and Fulton Lights manages to reflect that energy on the record. The sound swells and calms, but never overpowers. ...A great listen."--HeroHill **

(4.2 out of 5)"An album three years in the making, Fulton Lights's eponymous debut ventures into entirely different territory than its brainchild's previous engagements--namely, Maestro Echoplex and John Guilt. Though none of Andrew Goldman's projects prior to Fulton Lights could be deemed entirely 'conventional,' his latest offering transcends the earlier attempts at experimental songwriting, and also asserts his undeniable ability to soon rise to the highest ranks of the underground.

...The disparate elements of Fulton Lights coalesce to create something cosmopolitan, both in its inner-workings and its aural output. It's a city-fueled record, with noisy, vibrant soundscapes sounding as if pulled directly from a Brooklyn night. Multiple stringed instruments appear throughout, but the focus is Goldman's restrained, ethereal vocalizing and the basal drum beats. 'Thank God For the Evening News,' the sarcasm-drenched first song, balances orchestrated indie pop with a raw hip-hop backbone, while Goldman warns that skepticism is the only way of approaching our current state of affairs. 'The Sound of the City' is the writer's cry for silence, an end to automation and industry even if for a brief moment, for the sake of hearing 'the absence of the electric hum/and the sound of the wind blowing through empty city streets.'

New York City wears on you, apparently, as Goldman testifies throughout this record. Despite however much your emotions are tread on, though, there's that sense of infinity accompanying it, and it's translated to Fulton Lights's debut perfectly and poignantly. It shimmers throughout, and feels much, much more real than most things to have come out of the city's hip scene in quite some time."--Silent Uproar **

"...This album is just thick, heavy and dripping with atmosphere: The thin, whispery, yet expressive vocals, dense, intricate, deeply layered arrangements, slow, trudging beats, tinkling piano, clanging beats, edgy songwriting, skittish violins, and blurting horns evoke a strikingly potent and vivid sense of urban angst, despair and paranoia. The music itself varies radically from low-key and lovely to more harsh and punchy, thus giving this album a raw and stirring volatility and unpredictability that's a true thrilling treat to hear."--Jersey Beat **

"One of those songs where it only takes a few measures to know: 'yeah, this is going on my next mixtape.' Andrew Spencer Goldman -- who effectively is Fulton Lights -- allows his album to exhume plenty of Grizzly Bear atmosphere, but it's only on 'Fire' that his lyrics and melody do as much spine-chilling as the piano's damper pedal. With definite relish, Goldman yearns out a metaphor for losing something intangible yet vital; he knows as well as we that by missing his fortune he's struck gold -- even if just this once.

The song itself is the slow-burning, harmless fire, the quiet heat of potential, and so illustrates clearly what it is Goldman says he's lost. It's a deep familiar to swallow: the organ, the steady drum pulse, an ABAC rhyme on the piano, distant string thrills, and Goldman's tenor gently aching... The chord progression becomes insistent and silvery before stepping out beneath Goldman's finest moment: 'And every five alarm blaze / And every lit cigarette / Every candle / Reminds you of the old days.' Continuing and fading, the song's blue flames lick away at the diminishing form of their maker."--CokeMachineGlow **

(5+ out of 6)"The more we spin this album...the better it sounds. Smart tracks like 'Thank God for the Evening News' and 'Fire In The Palm of My Hand' make this disc a puzzling and strangely exotic spin. Truly neat stuff."--Babysue **

(8 out of 10)"... A modern roots tinged Americana with a wash of indie nuances...The record is lo-fi and slow paced, electronic beats stroll in and out of focus, its a heady and hazy mood... The music is like a remodelled, urbanised, Blue Nile, or perhaps a less sinister Black Heart Procession. The spirit of New York is inescapable, with dashes of the Velvets and Lou Reed in particular cropping up, John Cale style strings appear too. ‘1000 Little Eyes’ sums up big city paranoia and CCTV culture, a slow walking beat behind a fat reverby guitar sound with various unfathomable electronic noises ebbing and flowing, Goldman quietly, eerily, sings ‘You’re being watched by a thousand little eyes, Every building knows the truth and a thousand little lies’. The standout track is probably ‘Fire In The Palm Of My Hand’, an odd song, ‘We wondered where it came from, And now I wonder will it ever come back, Oh you’re in bad way, When you lose your fire’ sings the disconnected voice, and a half remembered Paul Auster story came to mind. This is an unusually interesting record, and very enjoyable even if it does leave you feeling slightly disturbed and uneasy."--Americana UK **

"Satisfyingly moody and intriguingly entitled, 'Thank God for the Evening News' unfolds with vivid style over an unhurried beat and minimal chord changes. Now then, I like chord changes and pretty much thought I required a good number of them in a song; and yet here's one with maybe two chords in it and I'm quickly and continually engaged. Well. How can this be? Certainly the beat beguiles, combining an electronica-like ambiance--including the subtlest sort of clanky, scratchy noises and thin, smashy drums--with organic sounds, including in particular a nice assortment of strings, employed with great color as the song progresses. Could it be that Andrew Spencer Goldman, the driving force behind Fulton Lights, uses the texture of the beat in lieu of chord changes, as its own sort of structure and substance? It's a theory. What he also has going for him is a wavery tenor, and a billowy melody for it to sing--moving and rising and sinking enough to distract you from the single-minded chord structure. The lyrics, at once dreamlike and caustic, add to the stylish desolation, like this recurrent series of lines: 'I've seen blurry vision/I've seen slow explanations/I've seen false advertising/And wholesale degradation.'"--Fingertips **

"'Fulton Lights' is a perfect name for the Brooklyn-based project masterminded by Andrew Spencer Goldman. This debut effort provides a masterfully crafted backdrop of sonic colorings.

Weaving your way through this collection is much like doing so through a great dream. Nothing is necessarily expected, but even the unexpected has a way of seeming incredibly fitting and acceptable - Goldman's musical visions are brought to life for listeners to see any way they choose.

The great victory here is the struggle and ultimately, the compromise between the ornate, lavish instrumentations and the naked simplicity of the vocals.

The result is bliss for the ear - 'Thank God for the Evening News,' 'Breathe in, Breathe out' and 'Fire in the Palm of My Hand' showcase the lazy beats, piano and string arrangements. This album is a quiet beast that packs a serious punch.

Verdict: A sneaky masterpiece."--Red and Black **

"...Hypnotic in every sense of the word, with vocals expressing nothing but ease and instrumentation as soothing as the sun. ...Truly transcendent."--5 Acts **

"...As Fulton Lights, Goldman takes city noise, rail squeals and tramway whispers, and to it he adds strings, vibraphone, piano, his own gentle voice. It's a kind of jazz: the basement improvising with the rush-hour, the singer-songwriter with the subway car."--Said the Gramophone **

"...A patient, evolving collection that mimics and reflects with its tracklist the passage of time over which it was created. Fulton Lights blossoms into deep colors to outgrow its early moments, replete with narrator development and all, rather than settle for a patchwork set of tracks sequenced in order of mood.

...If Fulton Lights at first hopes to set up the album as a documentation of early post-9/11 New York, the songs that follow are the cold-water splash of America’s current political shift. Stylistically, the minimalist, rhythmic contributions of Still (former third of Dälek) give way to more contemplative referents like Low or Yo La Tengo (or, on 'Old Photographs,' Ottawa/Toronto slo-core band Kepler, to chilling effect). Likewise, the lyrical thread shifts from rushed accusation and grand summary to subjects less anchored by such a politically charged period...

...As 'The Sound of the City' moves inexorably through its almost eight minutes, its meditation reveals a request for calm, a prayer for silence. The song asks New York to refute, if only for a brief moment, the voices that together declare its identity; New York is first a city that 'won’t shut up,' and, as the song closes, Goldman imagines a scenario where 'everybody held their breath.' New York is a difficult city to write about, let alone tame, and Goldman’s neutered New York is a fascinating dystopia of mute disaffection. As if striking home the point, the song possesses a gorgeous drone that is offset and contrasted with its minimalist details, such as the almost silent organ hum and distant drum machine of its bridge. Goldman masterfully puts into literal effect what, for him, is a central problem: the relationship between noise and silence is essentially the same as that between the incoherence of charged speech and silence, with the former always creating alienation and the latter the impossibility of connection. 'The Sound of the City,' though it sees only this binary, is still complex enough to do justice to the city it evokes. The image of Goldman’s narrator in New York’s noisy midst, pleading for a moment’s respite, is both fundamental and stunning.

...Our own Mr. Betz’s track review for the highly-praised 'Fire in the Palm of My Hand' was right on the money, not just for its summation of this gorgeous, piano-driven song, but also in the vocabulary necessary in categorizing such music: with easy, unquestioning sway, Goldman asks that one allow words across the page to be imbued with the same inalienable romance as his lyrics. Less interested in proclaiming self-importance, Goldman’s philosophy has an appealing naiveté about it that can be inspiring when it succeeds and maddening when it doesn’t.

Goldman saves his best lyrical turn for last, a culmination of his twin tools of brainy contemplation and simple honesty. On 'Breathe In, Breathe Out' he sings, 'And then just like that / he fell in love with the city / inexplicably / and unlikely as it would seem / His friends said it was the Patty Hearst syndrome / but maybe it was sympathy / But maybe he saw it breathe in, breathe out.' This confession is where Goldman truly shines, the album’s high point, and the greatest distance from Fulton Lights’s opening tracks in terms of sentiment; it’s as if over the course of the album’s forty plus minutes Goldman has clutched from a miasma of fear and suspicion the capacity for mature, sobering analysis. The New York he now presents us has come alive, pulled itself out from under the stifling politicization of recent years as Goldman sketches a narrator more complex than a simple tributary to the city or a dated or two-dimensional rebel figure. He completes this solid, often beautiful debut album by giving us an individual who comes to truly live in the city, a person who realizes the complexity of his relationship to the breathless sound and light that surrounds him; it’s all a source of both alienation and inspiration."--Coke Machine Glow [again] **

"...A project which sees it's mood built as much upon the softly breathed vocals of Goldman as the sparse crisp instrumentation. ...This is chill out music for urbanites who can't bear to release all of their city-bred anxiety. Or for small town folk yearning for 2 am in the 24 hour urban decay cycle."--SixEyes **

"...A really strong record: creaks and groans, melancholy and fierceness, Andrew Spencer Goldman's murmurs atop droning production."--Said the Gramophone [again]

Links: fultonlights.com | myspace | facebook | lastfm

CDs & MP3s:
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