Mother Falcon

You Knew

Phases & Stages

Mother Falcon

You Knew (Creme Fraiche)

Since 2010's Still Life EP, Austin's sprawling orchestral outfit Mother Falcon has balanced dynamic arrangements and subtle turns with a romantic if restless pull. Sophomore LP You Knew follows where 2011 debut Alhambra left off, yet despite the band's size and virtuosity – 20 members plying horns, piano, and glockenspiel while awash in a bevy of violins and cellos – MF understands that less is more. Soaring swells broil throughout the set, slowly developed opener "Pink Stallion" exploding from a plucked violin through raucous choral yelps, crescendoed strings, and an unexpected drop into a measure of jazz rhythms. Likewise, "Marigold," the album's strongest track, hearkens the dramatically structured play of Broken Social Scene, Architecture in Helsinki, and Stars, the male/female exchange turning on tension accentuated in the searing strings. Yet restraint conjures the eloquent beauty of the album in the delicate "Porcelain," operatic trill of "Sleep," and understated sway of "My Majesty of Madness." An expertly deployed hold-and-release drives the rising and falling "Dirty Summer," as well as the chugging bursts of "When It Was Good." From the slow drip of "Blue and Gold" to the nearly instrumental drift of "Marfa," You Knew plays as a master course in compelling arrangements.

***

READ MORE
More Mother Falcon
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Mother Falcon signs to Universal and seconds later terminates the contract

Kevin Curtin, Dec. 9, 2016

Worst Tour Stories Ever
Worst Tour Stories Ever
The road goes on forever and the party never ends

July 8, 2016

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Mother Falcon
Good Luck Have Fun (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, Oct. 23, 2015

Texas Platters
Erin Ivey & Tosca String Quartet
Whisper of the Moon (Record Review)

Jim Caligiuri, Feb. 14, 2014

More by Doug Freeman
Greezy Wheels Take a Last Bow
Greezy Wheels Take a Last Bow
Still Greezy after all these years

June 23, 2017

Texas Platters
RG Lowe
Slow Time (Record Review)

June 23, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Mother Falcon

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)