Justin Furstenfeld has plenty to say and most of it is very personal to the founder of this Platinum US band. Blue October have made a wealthy career in strange fusions of hip-hop and prog rock since 1996.
Opener Everything (Am Limbo) is among Blue October’s best work on Any Man In America, beginning the record promisingly with a distinctive, fragile Gabriel-esque quality that shines through in rays of proggy beauty alongside the ethereal feeling of guitar, For The Love almost bursting into stream of spoken-style lyrics that take route one when describing Furstenfeld’s love of music.
The Chills‘ backing vocals disappoint with a ‘wah ah ah ohh’ pop punky and out of place line. They sound adolescent and above all annoying. The Flight induces quite a cringing eye-roll because the poor intro of boring, over-the-top hip-hop, even worse lyrics and terrible backing vocals near its finish.
Although you can clearly feel the man’s pain in the issues of his personal life, it’s delivered quite badly. His honesty can be admired but it’s like when his pen hit the paper he just couldn’t articulate anything else other than a running commentary with ridiculous songwriting like on The Getting Over It Part – (“lead up bitch, till you had enough bitch, take my kids you can kiss both my nuts bitch”).
The Worry List is a tune streaming the insecurities of the troubled singer – but this time doing it in a modest, beautifully reflective fashion. Certainly a stand-out on the record.
Unfortunately the ridiculousness of his hip-hop doesn’t bring home Furstenfeld’s seriousness and his proggy ideas are much more desirable. With four-million albums sold in the US so far, Furstenfeld isn’t doing so badly for himself – evidently showing a demand for his straight-up deliverance of personal music.