Do Owe Harm by Feeding FingersRelease date: January 9, 2018
Label: Tephramedia Records
Austrian experimentalist Justin Curfman, aka Feeding Fingers, has been around for a while, 2006, to be precise. He came up with five other albums prior to Do Owe Harm, and all of them, including this one, run as a list of… let me throw a dart at the globe and see where I will find my next collaborators. So far the list includes musicians from his native Austria, Germani, Italy, Serbia, Japan, China… This time around he gets a helping hand from German sax player Philipp Gerschlauer and Italian violinist Marica Filomena Coppola along with his standard American rhythm section of Bradley Claborn and Christopher Fall.
When you take a look at the list and see the names of Nitzer Ebb and David J. Who himself played with Bauhaus and Love and Rockets, you might get a sense of the musical direction Curfman and his Feeding Fingers follow. You can add to that Japan and the early period David Sylvian, The Sisters of Mercy and Trent Reznor and Nine Inch Nails in their more mellow mood (if such thing exists).
Basically, what you can hear is a progressive-oriented pop with darker moods and some intriguing experimental touches, that Curfman himself describes as “an exploration of polytonal/ microtonal/ enharmonic music”. To achieve that he has used, in his own words, “tunable analog synthesizers, quarter-tone guitars, fretless instruments, acoustic / electronic hybrid percussion, micro-intervallic wind instruments & vocals abiding cautiously within the notes between the notes”.
Frankly, the ‘standard’ listener may not be so informed about the technical intricacies involved in creating music on Do Owe Harm, but you do get a feeling that there certain unusual elements going on, even if you can’t immediately put your finger(ear) on it. The is quite evident on some more immediate tracks, like the single ‘Fontanelle’, ‘Hate Yourself Kind’, and ‘Tallow’ the more immediate and at the same time exceptional tracks here.
So, while Feeding Fingers can be fitted on the list with the mentioned Eighties and Nineties names, there are musical touches present on Do Owe Harm that give it an individuality that makes it an enjoyable and listenable experience.