The first breath Michael Feuerstack exhales into the microphone releases lyrical life lessons. Melodies dappled with gentle guitar chords and the etheric sounds of the vibraphone wash over. His music commands attention without demanding it. His latest album, ‘Adult Lullabies’ showcases the poetic sensibility of his lyrics and the zen-like notes he employs, and reminds us why he’s been called a national treasure.
His first track ‘Blue Lights II’ features the vibraphone (performed by Jeremy Gara of Arcade Fire), adding meditative chimes that feel like the period at the end of a poem. Our fast paced, un-empathetic and spiraling modern society needs this reminder—rest, incubate, stop resisting. While the cool, blue light of winter drives us indoors, giving us permission to take it slow, it also fills us with melancholy thinking about the part of us that is in sync with the earth. The loss of light makes us wants to sleep, but we force ourselves to keep going.
These tidbits of wisdom carry through in the themes he explores. They are delivered in poetic phrases that feel like chants. Each track is short and has a slurring rhyme that conveys the feel of a lullaby that isn’t really trying to put us to sleep, but at ease. His songs take on a mood of existential angst bringing us back to the beauty of a moment in time; to a place of knowing and reminiscing; to the realization that you can’t go back. Perhaps the childlike awareness of simply enjoying each moment is what Feuerstack is seeking—the ability to appreciate things before we ever realize their significance.
Feuerstack has been working under his own name now for 25 years (previously under the alias ‘Snailhouse’). In that time he has performed as a member of ‘Bell Orchestre’, ‘The Luyas’, and has toured with notable acts such as ‘Land of Talk’ and Julie Doiron. This album release marks the one year anniversary of his first landmark album “The forgettable truth” and it showcases his personal style of ‘crooked beauty’ and the expansion of his reflective work. The inevitable loss of innocence and the resultant contemplation of time, and how we choose to spend that time with those that matter to us is what his music reaches towards. It can be somewhat morbid and pessimistic, but it is refreshing to ruminate rather than retreating from the artistry of sadness. Only sitting in a scotch bar under low blue lighting with snow dancing at the window could come close to capturing the mood and quiet elegance of Michael Feuerstack’s latest album: Adult Lullabies.
For more information visit michaelfeuerstack.com