BOARDER, Fiona Lehn's 3rd release, featuring the Fiona Lehn Underground Band, (FLUB), on 11 songs, as well as solo Fiona on 4 acoustics.
This album rocks and folks, and is packaged in the ecofriendly FLUBpak, designed by Fiona, made of recycled paper and minimal plastic! This album was originally released in 1996 but continues to grow more and more relevant with the political tides.
"Waiting for Dogot" is the internationally acclaimed metaphorical that speaks directly to those who feel justified in killing.
"The Real Truth," lauded by Hober thinking radio, tells it like it is for an independent artist in search of community.
"Human Living School" serves as a cure for the increasing problems educators and children face in an educational environment that is not supported by media or government.
Interested? Read on....
PRESS ABOUT BOARDER:
from BILLBOARD Magazine:
"... an atmospheric, airwaves-worthy acoustic-rocker that is also rife with clever literary wordplay ("Waiting for Dogot," from BOARDER). Lehn has a deceptively soft and girlish voice that bursts with white-knuckled authority as the band drives from the song's quiet verses into its guitar-crashing chorus. Anyone who digs the musings of Jewel, Joan Osborne, or Alanis Morissette needs to search this potential smash out." --Larry Flick, BILLBOARD Magazine.
"Lehn's anthems skewer America right through its broken, misogynist heart." --M. Bush, VILLAGE VOICE
"Someone has to be the folksinger." --Jim Robbins, Historian.
"Great voice, tight band, but 'Boarder' shines with the intelligent, challenging lyrical vision of Fiona Lehn."--Jim Foley
from THE RECORD:
"If Fiona Lehn's third album doesn't catch the attention of the record-biz powers-that-be for its musical virtues (which would constitute a continuing injustice), they certainly ought to dig its design.
The CD packagingÐa user-friendly, multi-flap, full color digipak printed on recycled paper - is as impressive and inventive as the musical repackaging it contains.
Lehn, the 27-year-old Stockton singer-songwriter, has decided to rock out, expanding her pallette for the first time on record from an acoustic guitar and light folk texturing to a louder, more intense, electric folk-rock setting.
Like the classy package - created and designed by Lehn and printed with ingenuity and resourcefulness entirely in the Valley - it works.
Lehn's strengths - her delicately nuanced soprano voice, her imaginative, insightful song-poems and sometimes slightly off-kilter melodic structures and tempos - don't get buried in the mix.
If anything, her voice assumes added dimension in this context - weightier and heftier in places, more determined and tougher-edged in others - without resorting to overkill.
She doesn't have to yell to be heard.
So, her voice and vision -that of a hopeful, willing survivor/observer who doesn't quite fit into an indifferent world - remain intact.
So does her unconventional songwriting approach, even if some of the rhythms and melodies have been streamlined a bit to fit the full-band format.
The opening, "When Things are Good" - a rare romantic respite during which she still can't help worrying -belongs on the radio right now.
It's a slice of sleekly grooving pop-rock with a pretty "ah-hey-ah" chorus hook.
She moves easily back and forth from affairs of the heart to concerns about the world, spends time taking personal inventory and grapples with the temptations and false promises of a music-biz career.
Her most affecting songs are her most personal and introspective ones - "Lady Loves a Fool," a mid-tempo folk-rocker on which she finds herself spinning in a romantic limboland; "Wooden Heart," a pretty acoustic ballad on which she sounds contrite and vulnerable, but determined to dance on, as her vocals achieve full soprano flight; "Not So Old," a 26th birthday rite-of-passage song to herself; and the pretty acoustic title song on which she sadly observes that "our transience always has excused our neglect" while hoping for reconciliation and an increased sense of community.
Careerist conflicts inform the lightly folk-rocking "Is It Worth It?," an inner dialogue in which she tries to balance record-biz aspirations with homegrown instincts.
Its almost spiteful tone is offset by the free-spirited "Happy Now," an acoustic ballad that contrasts the temptations of domestic bliss with the more powerful wanderlust of her unfulfilled musical quest.
Grimly serious tracts - the slow, edgy "Boudicea," inspired by the rape, torture and murder of women in Bosnia; and "Waiting for Dogot," an angry, episodic roiler intended as a commentary on anti-abortion extremists - mix with a joyful, playful self-esteem romp like "Big Women" (sassy folk-rock with a slide guitar motif) and hopeful assessments ("Different Kind of Man," as amped-up bit of pop-rock that pays homage to a "philosophical man" who's "learning to cry" and "lives somewhere in between the old world of men and the feminist regime").
She takes internal inventory on "Spawn," a mix of acoustic/electric guitars with a hooky chorus and funky guitar/bass slashes on which this "fish out of water" - this "bread baker from Paris, stuck inside America in a Twinkies factory" - balances the instinct to "float down the mainstream" with her need to find "alternatives." "The Real Truth," a slow groover with edgy guitar riffs, is a sobering reality check as she assays a less-humane world where her stubborn hopes and dreams are under constant assault.
On "Human Living School," with a gritty guitar chime and a memorable chorus, this part-time high school English teacher wishes people knew more about getting in touch with their physical and spiritual essence.
"Boarder" is further evidence that Lehn possesses the artistry - musically and graphically - to earn the wider audience she deserves.--Tony Sauro
(The above articles have been abridged--for full stories and more press, visit www.droidfingers.com/press.html)
BOARDER Contains: "Big Women," "Waiting for Dogot," "Human Living School," "Spawn," "Not So Old," "The Real Truth," "Boudicea," "When Things Are Good," "Is It Worth It?," "Lady Loves A Fool," "Different Kind of Man," "Happy Now," and "Boarder."