In retrospect, Fishboy‘s Albatross should have garnered my #1 album slot for 2007. Seriously: the album remains one of the most-listened-to albums even today. The oft dubbed Twee Rock Opera was a truly brilliant concoction. And, as front-man Eric Michener quietly hints at a follow-up, he releases Nom, a nine-song EP consisting of rejects from the original concept album.
If you find Albatross to be an interesting concept, Nom will follow suit. Fishboy sent the songs to a band of friends (the band: Om Nom Noms) who put the words music. For the next phase, it is worth noting the band’s words sans any paraphrasing or other crap like slicing and dicing:
Nugget #1: The writing process of Albatross was 95% linear, in that nearly every track was written in the order it appears on the album. After the first song was completed, some thought was put into where to take the storyline and the musical flow of the album. Oftentimes full songs were completed and then scrapped because one of these two things wasn’t working out — either the plot came to a dead end or the flow of the album didn’t work. When it was time to start the follow up to Albatross, it became clear that any attempt to use these songs would result in a lyrically confused mess of an album. Not that the songs weren’t good; they were just abandoned plot lines to an alternate rock opera reality. And so a plan was hatched.
Nugget #2: Instead of gathering the band together to spend precious writing and arranging hours on these songs, the decision was made to blindly put them in the hands of a group of musicians with nothing to lose. Michener decided to hand over all musical duties and decisions to a local Denton, TX group of super-producers known as the Om Nom Noms. Michener took one trip into the studio, recorded vocals and scratch guitar, the guitar was deleted, and the Noms reconstructed the songs however they saw fit. Some upbeat songs became ambient, some hushed finger picked songs became rockers, and anything was possible in between.
Fishboy proved with Albatross that they were a forward-thinking, state-of-the-art type of band. And with Nom they continue to prove to the world that Fishboy is one of the most awesome, totally spectacular and unparalleledly phenomenal bands in the whole freakin’ world.
HHBTM [12″ EP, 2009]
1. Bricks Part 1
2. Bricks Part 2
3. Cobra Cobra
4. Gabe Saucedo Hates My Guts
5. Broken Bones
8. Larger Than Before
9. Tired Tried