Collapse of the Silver Bridge
FonFon Ru, according to press materials, makes “post-punk [that] explores anxiety and modern dismay while arising from a desire for a loving, caring world.” I dare say that’s the kind of post-punk we need these days, and FonFon Ru delivers it on their second full-length, Collapse of the Silver Bridge.
A health scare experienced by one of the youngish band members inspired the lead track and first single, “Fatty Tissue Thorn.” It’s a bang-up rock song about a subject rarely explored in the genre (Rush’s “I Think I’m Going Bald” set the standard). “I know something is wrong with me / So I check WebMD,” vocalist/guitarist Harry James sings. “Now I’ll never sleep / ’Cause that shit murders me.”
“How come y’all can drive a Lexus / But I can’t afford the dentist?” James half-raps on “Don’t Let The Cat Out.” “I should be part of the middle class / But y’all went ahead and got rid of it.” Excellent points here, driven home by gales of guitar courtesy of James and session member Cormac Brown, and much courageous drumming by Wes Sterrs.
There are lighter moments, too. The poppy “Manicure Manager” celebrates the joys of well maintained, and even glittered up, nails, regardless of gender. “I’ll Let You Lick The Salt Off My Hands” is a sweet tune about a pet. “Pool Party Pt. 1” is a minute-long goof rocker.
But Silver Bridge ends on a note of deep discomfort. “I was never afraid till I fell in love,” James sings on “Tu.” “Now I’m afraid of everyone.” He’s inside a crowded bar or beer party, jonesin’ for a smoke. “I’m anxious, I might go home / But I hate to be alone,” he confides. “So I’ll stay.” And then, in a shout curdled with desperate anger, James asks, “When did I get so nervous about everything?” There is no answer.