American Football – Discuss

I hadn’t intended writing about this band today, but I ran out of time with the thing I did want to write – spreading myself thin again.

American Football is another band I’ve stumbled upon recently.  I was reading Pitchfork, the online music magazine.  There is an amusing article from Feb 2016 about this band; amusing because the writer waxes lyrical about what a shame it is that they are never going to make another album, because their first and only record showed such promise.  I looked them up and was a bit confused to find 2 albums listed – they released their second album two months after the article was written, much to the surprise of the music press it seems.

When I listened to their first album from 1999 I was slightly enchanted.  The music belies the lyrics I think which are so heart-breaking and full of melancholy as they chart the difficulties in a relationship. The guitars are beautiful (I was sort of reminded of mid to late 90s Teenage Fanclub, or is that just me?), there are trumpets in places and the off kilter, swaying melodies are soporific in a calming way; yet the subject matter is quite gloomy in places.   The second album released last year continues with a similar sound and themes.  It’s almost as though they’ve had a lovely peaceful time of it for the past 17 years until something has triggered the need to vomit up and share the emotion again.

But quite honestly, I don’t know what I’m talking about here.  I’m just trying to explain my response to listening to it.  I don’t know enough about this scene or music in general to provide a more informed view I’m afraid (Wiki says it’s Emo – I curled my lips at this, hey, what do I know?), but I’m here to learn.

Yet again ‘Spillers I come to you to fill in the gaps in my musical knowledge.  What can you tell me about all this and who else should I be tracking down?

10 thoughts on “American Football – Discuss

  1. Sorry to post 4 minutes after you, we must have been typing at the same time … I don’t know American Football but I like the sound. Can’t think of any comparisons, though, except perhaps Fall Out Boy? But it’s not really my era so I may be off the mark.

  2. Don’t know them, but an interesting find. Seems to be a blend of Emo & Math-Rock from the gentler end of those spectrums.

    I see how you hear The Fannies. Can also hear a Tortoise influence.

    • How weird! Are you going? American Football are playing in Brighton over here later in the year. I don’t know anyone who would go to that with me tho…

      • Can’t make it – was just checking with a friend to see what shows were coming & that was the 1st to pop up.

  3. I get sent a lot of things from Polyvinyl records – and there are similar styles of band in their output (and various other styles obviously!) – lots of free samplers in the link below:

    Polyvinyl samplers

    Thought Darceysdad might have more knowledge of American Football – from the things I knew of them I thought that ‘Get Cape Where Cape Fly’ might have had a sneaky listen before recording this:

    I could add it to Fuel’s workload with these lyrics:
    “I went to IKEA today,
    It didn’t change my life.
    Yet everyone in my street is going Scandinavian,
    It’s like the upper east side in semi-detached suburban Britain”

    • Oh yeah. The similarity is very noticeable. I really like this – I can’t remember ever paying much attention to them, but will have a little re-listen.
      Thanks for the link – I’ll take a look at that too.
      I haven’t seen DsD here for a few days – maybe he’ll add his 2p worth when he next pops by.

  4. Never heard of them – enjoyed the sound – some lovely guitar. Not really hearing Emo, except perhaps in the vocals.

    I’m going to through Girls into the mix:

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