Thankfully Ezra Furman is not related to Doncaster Rover’s hapless South African midfielder Dean Furman. Unlike his footballing namesake, Ezra is creative, energetic, pacy at times and actually manages to score sometimes with some cracking songs which ultimately hit the back of the music biz net. Maybe Dean should think about a music career.
They love Ezra on 6 Music. I was so sick of hearing how great he was that I decided to find out for myself and surprisingly he was actually quite great. That’s not to say that this is the most consistent of albums, but most of the songs are at least engaging and four or five are things of beauty. However, it’s quite hard to describe the kind of noise that Ezra produces. It’s original, unique, lo-fi, folky but with a timeless quality that recreates the atmosphere of Bob Dylan or the Byds. If you need further persuasion; he looks like a cool guy, he probably writes these songs in his cellar and his backing band are called The Boyfriends.
The pick of the bunch are the poignant singalong of ‘Cold Hands’, the skiffle-tastic ‘Tell ‘em All to Go to Hell’ and the stunningly atmospheric ‘Walk on in Darkeness’ which sounds like a cross between Surfa Rosa era Pixies and the Cramps on a good day. I often find myself singing ‘Maybe God is a Train?’ as well. And who knows, maybe God is a train? Maybe a train invented Honky Tonk angels? ‘My Zero’ also has some appeal on the catchiness continuum.
This is a great introduction to his work and I’m instantly hooked and looking forward to the next Ezra album I can get my hands on. Hopefully Dean will take note and prove to be more dynamic, creative and speedy in the future just like Ezra.