Fiona Lehn | Boarder

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Fiona Lehn

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Folk: Political Rock: Folk Rock Moods: Solo Female Artist
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by Fiona Lehn

Fiona rocks and folks on "Boarder" with a 70's tinge and a present day relevance--lyrically driven songs questing for love; discovering humanity; questioning the right to kill for one's God, the Corporate takeover of art, and much more.
Genre: Folk: Political
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. When Things Are Good
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3:23 album only
2. Waiting for Dogot
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3:42 album only
3. Spawn
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3:44 album only
4. Not So Old
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3:56 album only
5. The Real Truth
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4:30 album only
6. Different Kind of Man
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4:11 album only
7. Wooden Heart
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3:52 album only
8. Boudicea
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4:58 album only
9. Is It Worth It?
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3:52 album only
10. Livin To Do
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4:20 album only
11. Boarder
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3:43 album only
12. Lady Loves A Fool
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5:43 album only
13. Human Living School
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4:11 album only
14. Big Women
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3:41 album only
15. Happy Now
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4:50 album only


Album Notes
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....


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

"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

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."


to write a review

A Mccarthy

love this album!
This album rocks! It oozes personality, and combines in a most serendipitous fashion meaningful lyrics, melodious tunes and very strong vocals. You can hear the influence of other singer songwriters in Boarder, such as Joni Mitchell, and the Cowboy Junkies (the latter especially in Wooden Heart, a delectably melancholy number about inner monsters and the perils of relating, which is probably my favourite on the album) but overall Boarder has a pretty unique sound. The style ranges from mellow and rocky, to funky, to tender and personal. The political songs, such as Boudicea which is a protest song about women and war and in particular about Bosnian rape camps, reflect an anti-corporate, feminist agenda without being preachy. Overall, youth and its attendant themes of self discovery, relationships, love and journeying, (Lehn's San Joaquin origins show through in at least one song, Is is Worth It) are perhaps the main theme running through the album. Whether fiestily political or more reflective, Lehn's resonant and very listenable voice binds all the songs together to generate a coherent, challenging whole. It was my first FLUB album, and I'd definitely go back for more.

James Lord

Bestill my inner Queer Eye...
I love this album. It's even better than The Will. It seems to have a rockier feel in places. Ms Lehn decribes the murder of Barbie, stating that she was on Ken's side. Anyone like to disagree? What irritates me is my personal reaction to the artwork on the album. I found myself asking why a beautiful woman would wear those 1920s maid glasses and the beat poet hat. Then I remembered that it's not about looks, it's about the music... which is very cool.