VideosAroundTown: Former Friends of Young Americans “Sea & The Land”

It was a moment of happiness when Toby Fatzinger came to the rescue about a fifth video for this week (yes, I sort of cheated yesterday, but so what). He sent me a message about the new video for Former Friends of Young Americans for “Sea & The Land” the lead off track from their amazing eleventh hour album of 2013 Dives Like A Fool, Swims Like The Dead. This was my feature album in the January 2014 issue of JAVA Magazine, and one of a few of my favorite albums from last year that I didn’t get to write about during the calendar year. This was immediately followed by an enormous sense of sadness when I discovered that this video post and that article (“Apocalyptic Love Songs”) would probably be some of the last things I would write about Former Friends of Young Americans as they are leaving Phoenix for opportunities to be found in Bowling Green, KY. I’ve been a fan of Former Friends of Young Americans from the start, literally, it was the very night Dan Somers handed me their strange freshly pressed debut EP that had no song titles listed anywhere on the cover art or the CD inside.  This was followed by the release of their full length debut estas diluculo which I featured in the January 2012 issue of JAVA with great verve (you can read the expanded review HERE). It is still literally my soundtrack for a darkened room and an opened mind to this day. So this post is one of mixed emotion, I suppose, on one hand I get to celebrate a new video from one of my favorite local bands and at the same time bid them farewell, hoping there will at least be one great last show of theirs that I can catch.

“Sea & The Land” is one of my favorite songs from Dives Like A Fool, Swims Like The Dead, an album largely concerned equally with death and love. This is definitely a reflective song of love, without doubt and downright whimsical compared to many of the other songs on the album. The lyrics read like free verse surrounding troubling events and memories, but the way it’s carried through is with a sense of hypnotic beauty. “I hardly ever arrive on time, but you don’t mind,” they sing dreamily and it is reminiscent of a hazy time when things like that didn’t matter and love was without a schedule. A sunshine dreamy dramedy if the album has one, and a perfect opener for all that follows. The video matches it perfectly as it is a collection of footage from the road over the last year as Toby and Amanda Crawford have toured and of them in various recording studios. It is a beautiful portrait of this magical music making couple. Please enjoy this lovely document and stay tuned for show announcements before they spread their wings beyond the boundaries of Arizona.


“Sea & The Land”

The Cheery Lynn Digest had a fake article
That read the state of the skate was in the backyard
Of a cookie cutter home nailed together with shards
Of particle board, that’s where I tore my hip

I hardly ever arrive on time, but you don’t mind

The trailer park where my best friends dad
Lived in secrecy all quiet and sad
Was home to the man as the story began
That made me sell dope to grade school kids

I hardly ever arrive on time, but you don’t mind

The spinning rug
Washing my hands
The TV volume
Resting at ten
My heroine habit
Some girl I had
The spaces in between
The Sea and the land