You Know That Face As I Do: A Listen to Jackie Down The Line by Fontaines D.C.

Do not expect the same as Dogrel we were categorically told. Irish wordsmiths with a penchant for rock n roll, Fontaines D.C. torpedoed their way into our consciousness with their 2019 debut album in the same fizzing brilliance that we bore witness to from The Strokes. But when their second baby, A Hero's Death, was born, a deep-seated moodily melodic touch appeared sliced with the ferocious current that captured the world's attention. April 22nd, 2022, is the date for their third and most 'cinematic' record Skinty Fia, via Partisan Records, and anticipation builds from lead track Jackie Down the Line.

Trusted collaborator Hugh Mulhern, who gets them fully and truthfully, directs another visualiser stuck in a fuzzed lucid dream harking back to the fantastical video trend of the 90s, as the band provide the soundtrack to a bizarre performance art piece that takes a dazzlingly dark turn, all on a bed of red rose petals. A darling link perhaps to the opening tradition of the D.C. live, where flowers are strewn upon the thirsty audience waiting for the band to strike their first note; they scour the audience warm at a glimpse of their homeland's flag.

The presence of their rhythmic ability, lyrically and musically, is strong, and permission for the mind and senses to dip in, out and between each of the five's wares is granted. Tuneful and repetitive, it bubbles unmistakenly as a mid-tempo Fons brood, less frantic, more refined. A tale of Sally and the doomed intentions of Jackie is painted as the devilish character's potentials unravel: "I don’t think we’d rhyme, I will wear you down in time."

Red washes throughout the video opposing the blue tones of Hero's Death through curtains, lighting and blooms, and adorns the artwork of the forthcoming album cover featuring an extinct Irish giant deer. The traditional phrase Skinty Fia translates to the damnation of the deer, reminding us of how essential heritage is to the five Dubliners. Their hats may lay in new homes now, but all that is left behind can never leave them. Fontaines D.C. evolve rapidly, release music at an astounding pace, but their land will never leave them. For their third work with producer Dan Carey, we wait for Spring.

Article by Beverley Knight