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Hysterical Stars


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Audio CD, May 24, 2005
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A turbulent, convulsive and ultimately brilliant record." -- Venus

"The results are breathtaking." -- Illinois Times, May 26, 2005

"This is the kind of pop that makes you feel cooler just for knowing it exists." (5 out of 5) -- Alternative Press

"a lush sonic majesty..." -- Time Out Chicago

Head of Femur are an irresistible meld of high spirits and grand artifice. -- Washington Post

Head of Femur's debut album is a herald of good times, brimming with good humour and invention. -- NME

its frantic mix of confessionals, characters studies, childhood reminiscences and reflections on art are both endearing and smart. -- New York Times, June 12, 2005

musical equivalent of what Dorothy might have felt like when first stepping out of her house into Oz. - 7.9! -- Pitchfork Media, May 2005

About the Artist

Head of Femur was founded by three friends from Nebraska who had moved to Chicago to be rock'n'roll stars. The trio recruited friends to capture the dynamics of the songs that had been written. On stage and in the van, HOF are now an 8-piece with trumpet, trombone, drums, keyboard, violin, bass, and two guitarists. Every member of the group plays in multiple bands, but we'd be remiss if we didn't mention Matt Focht, lead Femur, is the drummer for Bright Eyes.

1. Elliott Gould Is In California Split
2. Ringodom Or Proctor
3. Manhattan
4. Percy
5. Skirts Are Takin' Over
6. The Sausage Canoe
7. Oh You're Blue
8. Song For Richard Manuel
9. Born In The Seventies
10. Easy Street
11. Sometimes Friends
12. Jack And The Water Buffalo

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 24, 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Spin Art
  • ASIN: B0009HLCRE
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #911,895 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Christopher P. Finkbone on September 13, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I cannot even begin to say what a great band Head of Femur are. These Chicago kids have phenominal pop ideaologies. This and their first album have a great fusion of 70's (Sparks-like)glam, conventional pop, and even into various facets of Americana. To describe what I mean, let me take through the track "Easy Street". It is a song the has an upbeat pop structure. Towards the end, the song go into phenominal orchestral strings, which then fuses into a New Orleans style jazz break, and then ends with a mariachi latin style. This is all brilliantly done with extraordinary composure. This music is not for cultural morons. This material is smart, composed, and delightful. More easily stated I would say that this band is like Flaming Lips, early Genesis, and The Band rolled into one sweet package. HOF are exceptionally experimental and interesting. I truly believe in them and what they are doing. 'Chris Finkbone
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By poppaculture on March 31, 2006
Format: Audio CD
I cannot say enough great things about this group (and to hear them perform such elaborately arranged pop songs LIVE is truly a testiment to their musical prowess).

Imagine if George Martin had produced the Clash, or Brian Wilson was with the Foo Fighters. These gentlemen produce smart lyrics (not as cryptic as Steely Dan) and great music.

I can understand the comparisons to Polyphonic Spree, the big sounds and crescendos, but this band is so much more. I hear influences from Burt Bacharach, Peter Gabriel, Elvis Costello and more.

"Skirts Are Taking Over" is my favorite track (would love it to become a hit single).

I love this CD. (I enjoyed their earlier "Ringodom or Proctor" CD, too)
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. Charvat on August 27, 2005
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I always like to give an album a few spins before deciding whether to keep it or trade it back in. This is an album worth holding onto for the occasional listen when you are looking for something a little different. It sort of hits me like the Flaming Lips; Quirky, fun to listen to but not something I am in the mood for all the time.
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By Lino Terlati on February 22, 2013
Format: Audio CD
Head of Femur is a band from Chicago, which has in its catalog-pop songs, but very special in some way close to XTC, but with more oomph. The trio was accompanied during the tours of other elements such as horns, synths, strings. And the compositions are pretty rich, enough in one piece from this album made me fall in love with them, ah there were the new bands like these.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jose Jaramillo on January 10, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Ouch, I know.. 1 star???... unfortunately yes. I bought it and would trade it for just about anything else. sigh.. I've just never been so disappointed with an album ever since I switched over to this whole marvelous "indie rock" thing. As stated before, there was no spark to want to listen again, I gave it enough plays but there wasn't a single moment to bring me back and possibly discover more. To each his own and no thanks.
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