When I first heard We Built a Fire, I thought, bloody hell, this is very Arthur Lee.
Possibly their best to date, I’d wager so anyway. We Built a Fire is as heartfelt a collection of pop as you can find. The band’s usual quiet, unassuming demeanour has been enriched with a lustrous, melodic sweep, which blesses all of the tracks on this record. When I first heard We Built a Fire, I thought, bloody hell, this is very Arthur Lee. And Lion Face Boy and I’ll Build You a Fire seemingly inhabit the rarefied headspace as Love’s more reflective moments on Forever Changes. Sod it, maybe it’s the trumpets that turn up now and again throughout, I don’t know.
Whatever it is there’s a confidence in this record that is incredibly charming. Seabear still do twee well, but it’s no longer sticky and awkward, rather tracks like Fire Dies Down and Cold Summer are washed out waking dreams, and confident enough to state simply and effectively what they feel. There are country-style hoe-downs (Wooden Teeth) and Velvets-style strolls (the beautiful Leafmask). Highlights for me are the driving, celebratory Softship and the strange stop-start of Warm Blood.
A marvellous LP, check it out.