Fruit Bats - Mouthfuls (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Fruit Bats

Mouthfuls (2003)

Sub Pop

When I first listened to this album, I felt as if I had traveled back to the ‘70's. The Fruit Bats are a melodic folk band whose sound is so gentle and soothing it could put a baby to sleep.

Mouthfuls is the second release by Fruit Bats, but their first record on Sub-pop records, produced by Brian Deck. The front man of the band is Eric Johnson, who is not stranger to the Chicago music scene. His other permanent member is Gillian Lisee who joined in 2001. They were recently singed to Sub-pop in 2002 and have begun to take off, already completing three of their own headlining tours, as well as supporting bands such as Modest Mouse and The Shins.

So what will you hear if you pick up this album? You will get a taste of laid back pop-folk sounds. I would describe their sound as reminiscent of Fleetwood Mac, or Peter Paul and Mary. Be prepared to be put in a trance by soft vocals and harmonies, and mellow guitar and drums accompanied by and assortment of miscellaneous instruments including xylophone, keyboard, banjo, "household objects", mandolin, and other electronics.

The tracks seem to flow nicely, often times running into each other, taking a little while for the listener to realize they have moved onto the next song. They lyrics range from story telling to love relationships, but all seem to have an underlying theme of nature. My favorite of the album, "Seaweed" tells a story of love through the journey of a tooth and Martians, "If I broke my jaw for you I would find a bloody tooth and rip it out . . ." and the journey begins.

This music is for dreamers, for people who like to hear lullabies, for people who want to chill, and let music put you in another state, for hippies. When this band comes to town, you will see me there with a big blanket and pillow... well maybe not, but you will see me there. I think their live show would make the album complete, listening to the author tell his stories and describe his dreams.