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Firefriend – Fantasma is a dark psychedelic rock album with shoegaze, post-rock tenancies. This latest album have the eerie dark bass steady almost beat machine like live drums and extended reverberating and echoing guitars with dense fuzz tones. The vocals sound great coming in with ominous notes and reverb to draw the psych factor. The songs are shimmering reflections of sound refracted in the icy canyons of dark imagination. The cold reverb tones can be very chill and mellow or blast with killer fuzz tones and laid back drumming.

Firefriend – Fantasma has great songs that all stay in the 3 to 5 minute range. They are a guitar forward band and allow the sustained notes to fill the mix. the vocals are soft and punctual with an emotional apathetic appeal that is spiked with attitude. The lyrics are melancholic with lines line “Trying to find another way to live in this world” and “In the mornings I feel so hollow” and “There is more to life than just death.”

The tone of the album fits this honest downer outlook with reaching echoes that make distance and create a sense of isolation in a vast space. The vocals become fragile and serious with a mellow presentation. The sound pours out slowly as though its traveling through a viscus environment and being slowed down. The lag of timing is enhanced by the time effects and slap back which distort against the tight rhythm of the drum and bass. The bass gets into the reverb action as well in some areas of the album like in ‘666 Fifth Avenue’ where it also has chorus of a 80’s tone.

‘Ongoing Crash’ is a psych rock songs that brings to mind the vocal phrasing of Alex Maas of the Black Angels. The guitars are fuzzed out with tremolo and loads of reverb. Its driven sound is perhaps the most vintage or popular music orientation on the album. Overall, the Psych genre is not concerned with single or radio play but Firefriend has a few songs that could make awesome singles.

The sound quality on this album is very good the mix has warm tones and clear isolation of the various instruments. Each musicians performance it strong and the overall effect is highly inspired.

This album will appeal to fans of Brain Jonestown Massacre, Magic Shoppe, Alien Mustangs, My Bloody Valentine, Spacemen 3 and other spacey psych rock with shoegaze elements. They grab tones from the 80s, 90s, and today to craft their songs. Tone is very important in this style of music and Firefriend uses wonderful fuzz tones and effects that make their music stand out above their contemporaries.

Firefriend – Fantasma is the 11th full-length from the São Paulo, Brazil musicians. Their debut self Titled album was released in 2006 and many of their album were self released in limited editions. The last few years they have been partnering with Cardinal Fuzz Records and Little Cloud Records with great success. They are hyped by the psych rock community year after year and put out amazing vinyl that gets a repress or two.

Excited to see what the vinyl release will look like for this album and I assume it will be out on Little Cloud records or Cardinal Fuzz but time will tell. for now its direct Downloads from the bands bandcamp site. be sure to head over there and support this awesome band.

THE PSYCH ROCK
San Francisco
Dec 3, 2020:





Ian Smith, UK. Dec 2, 2020
Everything has gelled. Sao Paulo’s primary purveyors of psych perfection have dropped a new album upon us without warning and it’s the trio’s best yet. ...




Ian Smith, UK. Dec 2, 2020
There was a thread in American music in the late 1960s that someone untangled across the U.S.... ...


Emiliano D'Aniello, Italy. Jan 2018
Questo trio psych di San Paolo, Brasile capitanato dalla vocalist e bassista Julia Grassetti (comple...


Le Crowley, UK. Dec 2019
Hailing from Sao Paulo, Brazil, Firefriend are Julia Grassetti (bass and vocals), Caca Amaral (drums...


Le Crowley, UK. Apr 2018
São Paolo’s Firefriend are back with a new LP, Sulfur, set for release on Portland based label Li...


Primal Music Blog, Ireland. OCt 2018
The ever prolific São Paulo-based trio of ‘Firefriend’ continue to plough a deep sonic furrow i...


Emiliano D'Aniello, Italy. Jun 2019
Il miglior gruppo rock psichedelico in circolazione? Non lo so. Voglio dire, sono sicuro che ciascun...


SIC magazine, Brussels/UK/USA. Nov 2018
Pity São Paulo band Firefriend, who’ve been at it for over a decade and whose waves of superlativ...


Simon SixSmith, Netherlands. Dec 2013
Firefriend suddenly got a lot less friend and a lot more fire. This is a sweeping, expansive, peyote...


Kev Drummond, UK. Jun 2018
Manchester.London.New York.Berlin. All cities that we associate with having rich and varied musical ...


Linkiesta, Italia. May 2015
... è piuttosto un meraviglioso caleidoscopio di influenze. I Firefriend non si fa...


SIC magazine, Brussels/UK/USA. Aug 2019
More than deserving of its place deep in rock’n’roll’s hall of fame is the mid-distant, part-s...


Al Schenkel, Brasil. May 2014
O Firefriend investe pesado na dissonância, ruídos e experimentações, trazendo em seu ...


Dan Joy, US. Jun 2018
Setting aside the buzzy haphazardness and semantic dilution characterizing today's use of “psyched...


Reverb is for lovers, Germany. Apr 2018
Grenzen waren Firefriend schon immer egal. So auch auf dem neuen Album, das Noise, Psych und Space R...


Emiliano D'Aniello, Italy. Apr 2018
“Colpaccio della Little Cloud Records di Portland, Oregon che si aggiudica (diciamo così) la pubb...