LA’s Foreign Born will go on an indefinite hiatus as its members focus on projects like Fool’s Gold and Big Search. Instead of being bummed, let us be thankful FoBo at least gifted us the timeless backyard party anthems of their SC debut Person to Person. There’s still a whole lot of fawning to be done over that record. And by my watch, there’s also still plenty of summertime left for to rip it in earnest. As they ride off into the sunset, Foreign Born has also sent us an appropriately-titled new tune, “Keep It In Mind.”
Matt Popieluch, frontman for Secretly Canadian band Foreign Born, has been making music as Big Search since 1999. After making significant aesthetic breakthroughs in his dorm room at San Francisco State University, he embarked on a four-track recording spree that lasted the remainder of his collegiate experience, resulting in several 90-minute “albums” destined for the vacuum of obscurity.
Thank the stars Popieluch’s efforts as Big Search did not stop there. St. Ives now gives us Lay of the Land, a limited vinyl collection of Big Search songs, some of which date back to 2006, and most of which sprang from pure improvisation. Together, these recordings embody a sense of recklessness and gambling that is essential to the Big Search pallet. Lead track “That’s All (Lights On)” feels like jittery, back porch Suicide, while the rhythmic, churning guitars that crescendo with the title track create a sort of expericana krautrock. With heavy use of vocal harmony, chaotic guitar and collage-like rhythm arrangements, generalized descriptors for the record are hard to come by. Let’s just say Lay of the Land is a testament to jumping off a cliff and trusting there is water beneath.
The unique cover art uses a photo of Norwegian artist Anders Dahl Monsen’s piece “Beach Bum,” an ass sculpture on a beach in Malibu. Most agree it is a woman’s ass, but debate continues. Big search likes it either way. All 250 covers were hand-painted.
Look for Foreign Born on Aquarium Drunkard’s round up of LA bands chosen to cover Television’s 1978 album Adventure in it’s entirety. Foreign Born contributed their version of “Days” to the re-envisioned album cleverly titled Aquarium Drunkard Presents L’Aventure, which is rounded out with tracks from seven other Los Angeles area artists. The album is a digital-only compilation and is available from Aquarium Drunkard today. Download it for free or donate an amount of your choice, which would be pretty nice considering all proceeds to go the Silverlake Conservatory of Music. Check out the full tracklist below and get the compilation HERE.
01 The Henry Clay People: “Glory”
02 Foreign Born: “Days”
03 The Happy Hollows: “Foxhole”
04 Local Natives: “Careful”
05 The Deadly Syndrome: “Carried Away”
06 Imaad Wasif: “The Fire [ft. Lykke Li]”
07 Dirt Dress: “Ain’t That Nothin'”
08 Growlers: “The Dream’s Dream”
Travel into the Uncharted Reaches with FOREIGN BORN by way of their new video for “Early Warnings” from their 2009 release Person To Person. Follow the Foreign Born dudes as they travel by plane, by boat, and by foot with their trusty companion Floyd, to explore the flora and fauna of the Uncharted Reaches, including the elusive and rare Lamborghini Ox. It’s a journey that would make Steve Zissou himself proud. Directed by Matthew Lessner, check out the new video for Foreign Born’s “Early Warnings” below.
Starting in February, Foreign Born will be traveling through much more familiar territory as they come to a venue near you on their next U.S. tour. All dates will be with new DFA signees, and former Hockey Nighters, Free Energy. See below for full tour dates. Also, if you’re in the LA area don’t miss Foreign Born in their native environs as they play Spaceland next week on Monday, December 18.
12/18 Los Angeles, CA @ Spaceland
02/26 Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios w/ Free Energy
02/28 Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey w/ Free Energy
03/03 Minneapolis, MN @ 7th St. Entry w/ Free Energy
03/04 Madison, WI @ The Frequency w/ Free Energy
03/05 Chicago, IL @ Empty Bottle w/ Free Energy
03/06 Bloomington, IN @ Video Saloon w/ Free Energy
03/08 Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Tavern w/ Free Energy
03/09 Toronto, ON @ El Mocambo w/ Free Energy
03/11 New York, NY @ Mercury Lounge w/ Free Energy
03/12 Brooklyn, NY @ Knitting Factory w/ Free Energy