“Don’t confuse a memory of who you were with what you need.”
With that line Fort Frances’ new EP reaches its climax, in the middle of the single “Anonymous,” and the band announces-without question-their plans to continue evolving. No One Needs To Know Our Name is a leap forward for the Chicago trio, leaning more toward rock than their folk beginnings. Traces of Spoon and Dawes ooze out of every song while singer David McMillin maintains his pop radio-friendly voice.
The biggest similarity between this new EP and some of their older work is the idiosyncrasies that you find all throughout. There’s some phrasing in the lead track “Days Get Heavy” that you don’t hear very often (reminds me a bit of Fiona Apple’s Extraordinary Machine) that betrays the campfire feel produced by the pretty three-part harmonies.
“Best Of Luck” sounds like it could’ve been a Good News For People Who Love Bad News song that just missed the cut. The music overpowers the lyrics a bit, but I like the line at the end, “Your mind takes pictures of everywhere you’ve been, and everything that’s lost can be found again.”
The record may be called No One Needs To Know Our Name, but I think people will want to know Fort Frances once this EP hits. These are five well-crafted tunes performed by guys who’ve been making hits flying under the radar for years. Take some time to listen to The Atlas and Harbor before everyone knows their name.
No One Needs To Know Our Name will be released on May 12th. You can catch the band live in Chicago at Lincoln Hall May 8th, in Indianapolis at The Hi-Fi on May 9th, and Stage 2 at Rockwood Music Hall on May 16th.