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Stranger than Fiction, Larger Than Life: the Finn Brothers song-by-song discussion thread

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Lance LaSalle, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    I was playing with my Millennium Falcon* when this came out.

    *not a euphemism.
  2. StefanWq

    StefanWq Forum Resident

    Vallentuna, Sweden
    "Great Return" really does sound like a folk song from centuries back, but it also sounds very fresh. I like that it is a waltz and Miles Golding's violin playing gives the song a unique character. I haven't heard what he sounds like at his regular job (as a classically trained violinist being a member of a symphony orchestra in London), but both on this album and on his later guest appearances on the latest few Phil Judd albums I think Miles's violin playing has that sense of quirkiness and originality about it.
    I like the lyrics of "Great Return" too and have always interpreted them to be about how Tim feels about his solo career from the late '90s onwards, with perhaps more creative freedom and less pressure from record companies to write radio-friendly hits.
    therunner, HitAndRun, ToneM and 7 others like this.
  3. Sudie

    Sudie Well-Known Member

    Tennessee, USA
    Thanks for taking me down the Finn rabbit hole. I’ve listened to little else today.
  4. jcr64

    jcr64 Forum Resident

    He's investing in the stock market!
  5. drewrclv9

    drewrclv9 Forum Resident

    Jacksonville, FL
    Haha that's exactly what I was thinking earlier. "What a great return on investment! It'd be simply remiss not to write a song about it..."
  6. KangaMom

    KangaMom Queen of the Quokkas

    But I think I may be quite alone in that I'm not sure I've ever intentionally listened to Neil Young...

    (please don't throw me off the thread....)
  7. brownie61

    brownie61 Forum Resident

    I think if you are of a certain age (near mine), it was a requirement to listen to Neil Young.
    BeSteVenn, KangaMom and HitAndRun like this.
  8. KangaMom

    KangaMom Queen of the Quokkas

    Welcome @Sudie!
    Is a Finn rabbit hole like a wormhole in space - a portal to a different dimension where there is an infinite supply of music and lyrics?;)
    NorthNY Mark, jcr64, StefanWq and 2 others like this.
  9. KangaMom

    KangaMom Queen of the Quokkas

    Ha! I think I was legally required to listen to ABBA...
    NorthNY Mark, jcr64, StefanWq and 4 others like this.
  10. Michael Rofkar

    Michael Rofkar Forum Resident

    Santa Rosa, CA
    "Great Return" strikes me as not so much influenced by music hall, but more by Victorian parlour pseudo-Irish (e.g. "I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen"). That's not altogether a bad thing: I like some of that stuff, and I'm a sucker for waltzes. But the lyric "I made a great return" baffles me. 3.6/5
    jcr64, StefanWq, HitAndRun and 3 others like this.
  11. brownie61

    brownie61 Forum Resident

    I didn’t have trouble understanding it in the context of the rest of the lyrics. But I guarantee that every time I hear this song now, I am going to think of Tim playing tennis.
  12. You are most assuredly not alone there - I'm the same boat.

    And again, I was in that boat too...

    Cheap plug - my favorite tennis euphemism song: "Love Forty Down" by Frank Turner. It's charmingly silly and sincere at the same time.
    NorthNY Mark, StefanWq and HitAndRun like this.
  13. KangaMom

    KangaMom Queen of the Quokkas

    @jimbutsu - God I hope you don't have the same unfortunate photographic evidence that I have, of exactly how much ABBA I listened to, and how much merchandise was purchased.

    I blame my parents, my mother in particular...

    (Not that there is anything wrong with ABBA music - it was a big part of my childhood)
  14. factory44

    factory44 Forum Resident

    Pittsburgh, PA USA
    That’s right, @Lance. The Pittsburgh show on this tour was canceled because we had a massive ice storm that day. Tim made it safely to the venue. However, both Tim and the venue decided to cancel the show because the roads were absolutely treacherous. They were concerned that someone could get hurt (or worse) trying to get to the show. It was the right thing do (but very disappointing).

    Last edited: Jan 12, 2021
    KangaMom, StefanWq and HitAndRun like this.
  15. BeSteVenn

    BeSteVenn little-known member

    I saw Neil Young on October 16, 1978 and less than a year later saw ABBA on September 29, 1979. I still have my T-shirt from each concert, and I still listen to both ... but I listen to Neil (Finn) and/or Tim more.
  16. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Our votes for "Great Return"
    Average: 3,4857
    KangaMom, jcr64, StefanWq and 2 others like this.
  17. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Today's song is "Imaginary Kingdom", written by Tim Finn, produced by Eddie Rayner and Ethan Allen; engineered and mixed by Ethan Allen.


    Tim Finn: vocals, acoustic guitar, piano
    Brett Adams: electric guitar
    Miles Golding: violin
    Eddie Rayner: keyboards
  18. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Thanks, I think you've nailed the style; that's what I like about it. I like this weird pre-WWI music that Tim seems weirdly influenced by.
  19. HitAndRun

    HitAndRun Forum Resident

    Vivaldi: Concerto grosso in F , Op.3/7 , RV 567 - 3. Allegro featuring Simon Standage · Elizabeth Wilcock · Michaela Comberti · Miles Golding · Jaap Ter Linden · The English Concert · Trevor Pinnock.
    KangaMom, jcr64, BeSteVenn and 2 others like this.
  20. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    :love:A far cry from other side projects from non-Finn Enz members that we occasionally link too!
    KangaMom, StefanWq and HitAndRun like this.
  21. HitAndRun

    HitAndRun Forum Resident

    Imaginary Kingdom

    The song, not the album.

    This song doesn't start in an incredibly promising manner, with the verse being a bit pedestrian. But the hook-line when it arrives is good. And, the bit that might be a bridge is good too. The instrumental star here is Miles, though Brett provides some nice electric guitar. And Tim's voice is in very good shape here, hitting the high notes well. The song has some really good melodic contrast.

    Overall, this is a great song with a great arrangement. Perhaps some of the lyrics could be a bit more refined, and it's a bit like how it is said that Tim sometimes writes a song around an idea for a lyric he had. But, like the melody, the rest of the song seems to amply save the song from a lyrical perspective as well.

    I find the song a bit short. I'm just getting into the song, enjoying what seems to be an instrumental break and expecting more song, and it finishes. Oh, that's a fade-out?

    Excellent. That's a 4/5 for me. I'll give it an extra 0.1 :D

    factory44, therunner, ToneM and 7 others like this.
  22. StefanWq

    StefanWq Forum Resident

    Vallentuna, Sweden
  23. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Very much a country feel to the verses; like many of the songs on this album I can see this being some kind of hit with a more famous singer and a glossed up production. It's comforting and Tim's fragile voice on the high parts in the chorus actually suits the feel of the album in my opinion. (Though again, there is this demo-ish quality to the sound of the vocal recording, as if it's been flown in from something recorded at home with his laptop.)

    I really like both the guitar and the electric piano touches throughout the song and of course Miles Golding's violin that opens it. Though I want to be clear that I think this is the best collection of Tim songs that we have discussed so far, I do sort of agree that many of these songs I would like even better with a bit more of a solo or somehting -- "The Conversation"that the title alludes too doesn't really happen like you expect it too: part of it may be that Miles, while certainly a stellar player may not be comfortable improvising, as that's not his background. I don't know.

    Anyway 4.1/5 for me, I think this is a bit of come down and for some reason the whole "Imaginary Kingdom" metaphor in my opinion doesn't work quite as well as I'd like, but I get where he's going and I otherwise really relate to the emotional heart of this song.

    It's also a song that, with it's cozy warmth sounds exceptionally good on a snowy day, which is what today is in my world.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  24. Paul H

    Paul H The fool on the hill

    Nottingham, UK
    I'm glad I didn't have a mouthful of tea when I read this.
    KangaMom, brownie61 and HitAndRun like this.
  25. Paul H

    Paul H The fool on the hill

    Nottingham, UK
    Imaginary Kingdom: another one of Tim's two- or three-word "poetic" phrases he feels a need to wrap a lyric around. This time though, it actually works. And so too does the tune. I really do wonder what's the deal with the pattern of him putting "title tracks" on the next album.

    As for this song, I really like the chorus and it elevates an otherwise pleasant (if pedestrian) song. I'm feeling generous today: 4/5.
    StefanWq, therunner, ToneM and 6 others like this.

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