Run For Cover Records
Boston-based rock collective Fiddlehead – expertly comprised of guitarist Alex Henery (also of Basement), vocalist Patrick Flynn and drummer Shawn Costa (both of Have Heart) – has been patiently awaiting the release of their debut full-length, an LP titled Springtime and Blind. Boasting high energy, insane guitarwork, and a classic-meets-modern grunge rock sound, you might never want to stop playing this one. Each song will deliver its own shade of gray, however, when you find yourself head banging to songs that originated based on an exploration of grief. But Flynn’s intense honesty and the finesse with which he paints a picture of the loss experienced after his father passed make the album that much more enjoyable. It’s vulnerability at its damn finest.
The pain of the lyrics is palpable – at times – in the harsh and beautiful vocals delivered. While songs like “Spousal Loss”, “Poem You”, and “Tidal Waves” carry the album at a very quick – almost-staccato – pace, “Head Hands”, “Rejoice”, and “4/17/70” largely hang out in a meandering tempo, allowing the listener some brief moments to evaluate the mess of emotions they are most likely experiencing. Never mind “Poem You”, specifically, which holds within its lines a clip of Flynn’s father speaking over voicemail. The words “I’ll get back to you as soon as I can” are almost haunting, but allow you to really bask in the reality of an ever-changing life.
Fiddlehead has completely nailed the journey of an album with their first try, allowing natural ebbs and flows in the pace and style of the music. What we find to be incredibly attractive is their use of the tenth and final track space to introduce their most uplifting song of the bunch, “Window in the Sunlight”. Lines like “In the darkness/we’ll be alright” further ensure the idea that everything happens, and you don’t have to drown underneath the burden of loss. We’re super digging the message, and the method of delivery.
If nothing else, you can glean a little bit of optimism from between the covers of this album, as you evaluate the importance that one human can hold in the lives of the people around them. And to allow themselves – as a band – to be this vulnerable this early in their career? We are convinced that Fiddlehead knows a thing or two – even if you can’t tell if they’re named after a fern or a ship’s bow.
Springtime and Blind is out now on Run For Cover Records. Keep up with Fiddlehead here.