What is “Fantoche?” Roughly translated…a puppet. When the French use the word, they are speaking of governments. The same word in Spanish refers to a person controlled by others. While no strangers to the underbelly of life, on this release (their first on the Money Wolf label) Alacartoona has turned down a darker path. The songs on this recording explore the narrow, dimly lit byways of the human experience, featuring characters that are the unwitting puppets of forces beyond their recognition – sex and desire, addiction and bad choices, fear, loneliness, the need for love, and the failure of love. And yet, somehow, Alacartoona lifts the songs above the clouds of despair to find those rare patches of sunlit hope and joy.
Recorded in the famed Money Wolf Music Studio C, “Fantoche” also marks a departure for Alacartoona from the minimalist style of their two previous recordings. The players became puppeteers themselves, manipulating the studio surroundings, their instruments, and voices to create a cast of songs that dance, bow, and contort to their every whim and fancy. Falls, Forge, Marland, and Wooldridge worked in close concert to master these tales of desperation and manipulation into the sound recording presented to you here.
Songs 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 by Christian Hankel (2 w/ Bishop Hankel), 1 & 4 by Kyle Dahlquist. All songs arranged by Erin McGrane, Christian Hankel, Sergio Moreno, & Kyle Dahlquist. All songs performed by Alacartoona, with additional instrumentation by Justin Penney.
Ruby Falls - vocals, guitar
Providence Forge - bass, vocals, guitar, percussion
Overton Wooldridge - accordion, vocals, trombone, lap steel, cajon
Billings Marland - drums, percussion, glockenspiel