Mike Fiore, Faces on Film
Over the past year, Mike Fiore, the man behind Faces on Film (which half the time is just Fiore on stage anyway), has been giving his songs a little something extra. Maybe it’s the delicate touches — thorny chords tucked in between lines, or the rolling, breath-like tempo of his ballads. Maybe it’s his revival-tent revelations, which issue over tambourine and seething organ rave-ups. Or perhaps it’s just his voice, a pure, reedy, revved-up instrument that projects like the beam of a searchlight across dark clubs, sparkling river banks, and every other venue in which we’ve seen him this past year. The Troubles (self-released) showcased every indie-rock trick in the book and then some; Fiore nails the dusty acoustic approach, washed-out psychedelic flare-ups, and scrappy, waltzing sing-alongs with ease. And anyone who can wring actual catharsis out of a McSweeney’s line like “the medical mind isn’t one that exists” deserves some kind of a medal, right?