Further Seems Forever

The Final Curtain

Written by: PP on 11/04/2007 14:09:04

When the emotionally charged alternative rock outfit Further Seems Forever announced their break up to the shock and horror of their loyal fan following in January 2006, there was much distress to be seen in magazines mainstream and underground alike. We're talking about a band that was one of the most influential in the emo genre, and bands like Thursday, Emery, Armor For Sleep, Finch, Taking Back Sunday and others drew their sound from this band's much celebrated mixture of raw melodies and incredible singing talent ranging from Chris Carraba (now Dashboard Confessional) to Jason Gleason (ex-Affinity). "The Final Curtain" is their final gift to their fans, a great quality live recording of their last show ever, coupled with a few acoustic and bonus tracks in the end, making it essentially the best christmas/birthday gift to any Further Seems Forever fan out there.

As far as live albums go, "The Final Curtain" is exemplary at what it does. The band avoids artificially inflating their show and resorting into crowd control tricks at any point, and barely ever addresses the crowd except for brief statements like "We'd really like to thank you for coming out". Instead, they allow the music speak for itself, and the magic in the air at their last show has been captured to the live recording in good practice. The songs haven't been polished in the studio afterwards, but have been left as they were, and all instruments are at perfect levels to one another. They are also raw, recreating the passion the band has always had for their music, and it's almost possible to feel the same magical atmosphere on record as it was live. At the end of the songs you hear the crowd cheering, but the recording equipment obviously isn't aimed at the crowd as much as it is for the band, which is the way it should be on a live album as well. It adds atmosphere and character to the album every time you hear the faint cheers and applauds from the audience, who seem to be into the music just as much as the band is, playing their farewell show to their dearest, most loyal fans. You can hear it from the voice of their last vocalist Jon Bunch, from the occasional parts where it breaks, and his extended shouts that depict the kind of love for the music you rarely hear today.

I've never been a fan of the acoustic tracks so I won't discuss them here either. But since there are 20 tracks in total and a couple of previously unreleased demos as well, the three acoustic pieces don't matter in the overall flow especially because they are placed after the eclectic live recording of eleven songs and between the new tracks, which by the way are great and demonstrate exactly the passion Further Seems Forever always had for their music, and hint at the reason why this band was so important to so many people and bands back in the day.

"The Final Curtain" is one of the best farewells I have seen a band do, and also has slowly but surely gained its place in my top3 favorite live albums ever recorded. It simply has every detail covered that you would have experienced at the liveshow, and hasn't been destroyed by post-production in the studio. It is a product of a band that was so great one might even allow a tear out while retrospectively thingking about their efforts in the industry full of poseurs, and a recording of a show that would no doubt have rated 10/10 when experienced live. Honesty, passion and message - that's what Further Seems Forever was always all about.


Download: Hide Nothing (live), New Years Project (live)
For the fans of: Thursday, Armor For Sleep, Taking Back Sunday
Listen: Myspace

Release date 03.04.2007
Tooth & Nail

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