North Carolina has had a strong punk and indie rock scene for quite some time now. And like any scene, it is one in which lasting friendships are forged, members switch bands, creative differences happen, bands break up to form new bands, and occasionally two bands join forces for a split release. Well, that is the story when it comes to the two bands on the upcoming F+U split from the Autumn + Colour label. Handsome Foxes and Unifier already have a history together. They have shared members and shows while in previous bands. And they have played shows together with their present lineups. So making the decision to come together for this project was obviously an easy one.
Even though some Handsome Foxes’ members are now separated by the miles between North Carolina and Washington, D.C., they managed to close the gap and record some songs over time. During that time the members of Unifier wrote and recorded new songs for the own for the shared endeavor. And what has resulted from both bands’ efforts is a genre-shattering collection of finely composed songs that are strangely attractive to the ear, undeniably tight, artistically satisfying, and overflowing with feeling.
This Handsome Foxes and Unifier split brings to mind the indie rock of the ‘90s, the kind of music I partly grew up on, and to an extent can be compared to such greats as Mico, Cursive, Mineral, Sunny Day Real Estate, Cap'N Jazz, The Jazz June, and the like. Without question, this is the sort of music one listens to after breaking up with one’s significant other, sitting on the edge of the bed, smoking cigarettes, and intensely hating such betrayals of the heart. It’s the kind of music one listens to with a bottle of something cheap and effective, as one broods deeply into the night. Or the kind one listens to in one’s car stereo while one drives alone through the night on deserted highways, past sad artificially illuminated cities that might as well have no names, without a destination in mind or even so much as a reason for doing what one is doing.
The F+U Split is due for digital release through Autumn+Colour on October 15th. You can pre-order now through iTunes, however, or make it out to one of the Handsome Foxes and Unifier release show dates between October 11th and 13th and get a physical copy. If you’re impatient, you can always make it out to one of the shows on Unifier’s Northeast tour between October 3rd and 10th, at which the band will undoubtedly be playing some of the new material.