ANDY FOSBERRY “When Comfort Is Stranger” C45 (Third Kind Records)


I’d like to get a glimpse of what’s going on in Andy Fosberry’s head. Not like a literal glimpse – there’s a brain in there, and it’s firing electrical synapses and whatever to keep the body going. I mean like a glimpse into what his inspirations are, the visual images that play within his mind that inform the music he makes. Again, not literally – I fully understand that there’s not a projector or something in there flashing home movies on one side of his brain pan. I’m not going to try to dig through his skull with a teaspoon or anything.
I promise.
Andy Fosberry makes soundtracks, and thank god for that. Some of the soundtracks are real – Fosberry sees film and makes music for it. Some of the soundtracks are in his head – Fosberry sees visuals there and makes music for it. When Comfort Is Stranger maybe telegraphs its opening track, “Here Is Your Eye,” a Stranger Things homage with pulsing synths and 1980s-inspired vibe, but it veers beyond it to all sorts of cinematic atmospheres. There’s lens-flared ambient and piano-led melancholy, like the appropriately titled “Lana Del Rey,” which flatters the muse with a deft homage. (And let’s not kid ourselves – Norman Fucking Rockwell is an absolute treat.)
So it plays out like it says it will, treating “comfort” and “strangeness” like interchangeable elements, two sides of the same coin, a combination made familiar by the nostalgia it promotes. Turns out Andy Fosberry and I see pretty similar things in our mind theaters when listening to music like this, and we both have a visceral and positive reaction upon the brilliant juxtaposition. You could probably chisel your way into both of our heads and see pretty much the same thing!
Metaphorically. Always metaphorically with the head excavations.