Published Apr 30, 2018Now four albums and seven years away from the Fiery Furnaces, Eleanor Friedberger continues to let her songwriting range over new sounds. Rebound, her fourth solo album, finds her moving away from the guitar-led approach of 2016's New View and into a more colourful, programmed palette. Drum machines and soft-focus synths shape Rebound's ten songs, infusing the album's singer-songwriter introspection with pop-sized washes of sentiment. The approach is a good one: it offers Friedberger's singular lyricism a wide span of emotion-rich territory to traverse.
"Make Me A Song" is an easy highlight: written about an encounter with a born-again Christian, it angles art as its own devotional cause. Elsewhere, synthesizers and minimized electric guitar plucks guide "The Letter" and the tender "Nice to be Nowhere" into gorgeously delivered choruses. "Are We Good" is a witty, oscillating blast of miscommunication and snark ("I played croquet / it was croquet") that lands perhaps closest to Friedberger's previous band.
But the comparison is probably unnecessary these days: Friedberger's solo catalogue has its own gravity and range. And with that, Rebound continues her trajectory as an distinctive artist who's ever-skilful in her sonic explorations. (Frenchkiss)