Fur is the first album by the charged, fuzzed-out British blues rock band The Archie Bronson Outfit. They draw heavily from their 60s and 70s counterparts, which, thankfully, is not to say that they wallow in the past. The album starts off right with “Butterflies,” complete with raunchy guitar and Neil Young-inspired vocals. The assault continues with “Islands,” and its heavy, absolutely pounding rhythm section. This, along with the chorus of “This Heart Burns Electricity,” puts the album into full gear. “Riders,” which soon follows, slows things down a bit without giving up the grittiness of what preceded it. Given its title, it’s perhaps fitting that it has a Doors feel to it.
The Archie Bronson Outfit seem to have a pretty good thing going, so it’s kind of disappointing that the second half of the album is not nearly as affecting. “On the Shore” sounds again like Neil Young, but more subdued. The melody is pretty good, but after a while the song starts to drag. “The Wheel Rolls On” is a fast-paced song with a tension that builds, but there’s never really the release that I find myself waiting for the entire track.
There is, however, the second-to-last song. “Kangaroo Heart” is a pumping track containing the guitar lines and changes that I liked so much from the first half. Here, it finally sounds like what I knew this band is capable of; let’s hope they continue in this direction for their followup.