TFCF MUTE. CD/DL/LP
Naturalistic horror and obscured heartbreak prevail on an inimical eighth. Liars have whittled down their number over the years, now leaving Angus Andrew as the sole remaining member. Aaron Hemphill refused to finish their eighth record, leading Andrew to retreat to a remote outpost of his native Australia and point a microphone towards the bush. The result, TFCF (Theme From Crying Fountain) is the sound of one man communing with the muck via a series of harrowing tones, whistles and unusually deployed acoustic instruments. The piano on No Tree No Branch slops and wobbles; a wispy Balkan band loops beneath a synth that wheezes like a stuck pig on Cliché Suite. It’s defiantly uneasy listening, becoming yet uneasier still when No Help Pamphlet comes in sounding like a lost Badly Drawn Boy song. It brings Liars full circle back to their hostile early work – though far less compelling.