It will be quite the accomplishment for anyone to come close to this album this year.
Fontaines D.C. Skinty Fia is one of the most progressive yet nostalgic albums I’ve listened to so far.
A work that incapsulates all the melancholic references of our music culture in the last decades. It surfs on Stone Roses vibes, while simultaneously holding onto Joy Division, the obscurity of Arab Strap, and gothgaze scenarios.
It’s a beautiful hymn to English as well as Irish music culture. It’s “all we are” and “all we miss being”.
It sounds tender yet realistic and crude.

‘Skinty Fia’ translates from Irish as “the damnation of the deer”. This figure symbolises their move from Dublin to London and their love-hate relationship with their country and its ever-evolving music culture. Their music clearly harbours feelings of nostalgia, but at the same time it chooses to sacrifice it on a big allegorical music altar.

On their 2020 release, A Hero’s Death, Fontaines D.C. already made a clear statement on what their identity was going to be, surely not simple post-punk revival, but a progressive mix of styles that wouldn't fall into any definite category. Following into the footsteps of bands such as the Black Midi and Iceage - bands that always challenged boundaries and evolved with every album.

In a highly binary era, there’s something endearing about Fontaines DC’s bold refusal to take clear sides and choices (past vs present, revival post punk vs progressive, Dublin vs London etc). They instead surf on the many shades of colour in between, finding both comfort and desolation in every aspect.

This is no doubt one of the most accurate portraits of our times and therefore, at least for me, an exceptional work of music.

Favourite songs: “Bloomsday”, “Nabokov”.

I give this album 8.5/10

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