Fischerspooner – Sir

The Michael Stipe-produced return for Fischerspooner delves into personal experiences in great, often explicit detail, but may have benefited from a little restraint

Album Review by Eugenie Johnson | 14 Feb 2018
  • Fischerspooner – Sir
Album title: Sir
Artist: Fischerspooner
Label: Ultra Records
Release date: 16 Feb

'I’ve tried to square with the things I’m feeling' sings Casey Spooner on Stranger Strange. It’s a line that sums up the concept behind Sir, Fischerspooner’s first album in nearly a decade. Produced by Michael Stipe – whom Spooner says helped him to be more emotionally connected – it delves into his personal experiences in great, often explicit detail.

Documenting his journey back into the world of sex, many of the tracks on Sir focus on lust, reflecting honestly on physical connections. 'I’m a man who’s learning to be a man’s man' Spooner says on Everything is Just Alright, while on brooding closer Oh Rio he comments that 'your brain burns with all your cock’s needs'. Encouraged by Stipe to adopt a vocally raw aesthetic, the emotion in Spooner’s voice sometimes reaches boiling point.

Accompanying his words are varying shades of electroclash. While tracks such as the glacial, stuttering, eerily intense Togetherness – featuring a haunting backing vocal from Caroline Polachek of Chairlift – and the brazen, strident TopBrazil accompany Spooner’s more uninhibited style well, at other times the sonic palette becomes a bit less than complementary. A tinny, squelching brass section steamrolls over Dark Pink, while on I Need Love some of Spooner’s most reflective lyrics are gratingly paired with an overly pitch-shifted hook.

Sir is as extroverted as Spooner’s recent experiences, but some occasional, additional restraint may have added extra punch to its more introverted moments.

Listen to: Togetherness