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Fleet Foxes - First Collection: 2006-2009

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First Collection: 2006-2009

Fleet Foxes

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When Seattle's Fleet Foxes entered the musical conversation in 2008, their eponymous Sub Pop debut suddenly became a ubiquitous feature of the indie landscape. Its freshness and beauty were clearly something special and introduced the vision of talented frontman Robin Pecknold. Arriving at the vanguard of indie folk's big boom, the band's exultant harmonies, elegant arrangements, and winsome '60s-indebted aesthetic set them apart from their whistling, banjo-wielding contemporaries. They promptly established, then spent the next five years rutting out, the genre's tired template. Celebrating the tenth anniversary of their first Sub Pop release, this excellent four-disc collection compiles the sum of Fleet Foxes' early output from their 2006 formation to the smattering of B-sides and rarities that followed their debut. Appearing just one year after 2017's excellent but exceedingly complex Crack-Up LP, revisiting this material reveals the rare joy of those first recordings and what made songs like "Ragged Wood," "Quiet Houses," and "Sun Giant" so appealing. Pecknold's thematic mix of glowing optimism, empathetic love, and earthy enchantment felt genuine and his devotion to the autumnal tones of late-'60s classics like the Zombies' Odessey & Oracle and Fairport Convention's Liege & Lief simply drew more attention to the high quality of his own work. Bookending their two Sub Pop releases -- the Sun Giant EP and the Fleet Foxes LP, both released in 2008 -- are a very rare self-released 2006 EP and a collection of demos and other oddments. The former is notable for its more conventional indie rock tone and sounds very much like Pecknold finding his creative footing, which he seems to have done by its deeply harmonic final track, "Icicle Tusk." This EP also introduces Fleet Foxes' first pairing with influential Seattle producer Phil Ek (the Shins, Built to Spill) who would go on to helm their first two LPs and mix their third. The latter disc offers a unique look at Pecknold's folk influences from both sides of the Atlantic with the British traditional classic "False Knight on the Road" and the American murder ballad, "Silver Dagger." While both of those tracks saw limited release as B-sides, the fascinating basement demos for "Ragged Wood," "He Doesn't Know Why," and "English House" offer previously unheard sketches of those songs and are some of the highlights of this set. Fleet Foxes' longtime fans will likely have heard the bulk of this excellent set, but the rare cuts, early EP, and lovingly designed packaging with its unique photos and liner notes make it essential.
© Timothy Monger /TiVo

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First Collection: 2006-2009

Fleet Foxes

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1
Sun It Rises
00:03:13

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

2
White Winter Hymnal
00:02:29

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

3
Ragged Wood
00:05:09

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

4
Tiger Mountain Peasant Song
00:03:30

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

5
Quiet Houses
00:03:34

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

6
He Doesn't Know Why
00:03:22

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

7
Heard Them Stirring
00:03:04

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

8
Your Protector
00:04:11

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

9
Meadowlarks
00:03:13

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

10
Blue Ridge Mountains
00:04:27

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

11
Oliver James
00:03:23

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Strings - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

DISC 2

1
Sun Giant
00:02:14

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Writer, Strings, Bass - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

2
Drops in the River
00:04:13

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Writer, Strings, Bass - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

3
English House
00:04:41

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Writer, Strings, Bass - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

4
Mykonos
00:04:35

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Writer, Strings, Bass - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

5
Innocent Son
00:03:07

Nicholas Peterson, Drums - Robin Pecknold, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Writer, Strings, Bass - PHIL EK, Producer, Engineer & Mixer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist - Christian Wargo, Bass - Casey Wescott, Keyboards, Organ, Piano - Skyler Skjelset, Guitar

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2008 Sub Pop Records

DISC 3

1
She Got Dressed
00:03:28

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

2
In the Hot Hot Rays
00:03:05

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

3
Anyone Who's Anyone
00:03:45

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

4
Textbook Love
00:03:24

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

5
So Long to the Headstrong
00:04:16

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

6
Icicle Tusk
00:04:37

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

DISC 4

1
False Knight on the Road
00:03:44

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

2
Silver Dagger
00:03:19

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

3
White Lace Regretfully
00:02:31

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

4
Isles
00:03:04

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

5
Ragged Wood Transition Basement Sketch
00:01:46

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

6
He Doesn't Know Why Basement Demo
00:03:12

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

7
English House Basement Demo
00:03:57

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

8
Hot Air Basement Sketch
00:00:49

Robin Pecknold, Writer - Fleet Foxes, MainArtist

© 2018 Sub Pop Records ℗ 2018 Fleet Foxes, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

Album Description

When Seattle's Fleet Foxes entered the musical conversation in 2008, their eponymous Sub Pop debut suddenly became a ubiquitous feature of the indie landscape. Its freshness and beauty were clearly something special and introduced the vision of talented frontman Robin Pecknold. Arriving at the vanguard of indie folk's big boom, the band's exultant harmonies, elegant arrangements, and winsome '60s-indebted aesthetic set them apart from their whistling, banjo-wielding contemporaries. They promptly established, then spent the next five years rutting out, the genre's tired template. Celebrating the tenth anniversary of their first Sub Pop release, this excellent four-disc collection compiles the sum of Fleet Foxes' early output from their 2006 formation to the smattering of B-sides and rarities that followed their debut. Appearing just one year after 2017's excellent but exceedingly complex Crack-Up LP, revisiting this material reveals the rare joy of those first recordings and what made songs like "Ragged Wood," "Quiet Houses," and "Sun Giant" so appealing. Pecknold's thematic mix of glowing optimism, empathetic love, and earthy enchantment felt genuine and his devotion to the autumnal tones of late-'60s classics like the Zombies' Odessey & Oracle and Fairport Convention's Liege & Lief simply drew more attention to the high quality of his own work. Bookending their two Sub Pop releases -- the Sun Giant EP and the Fleet Foxes LP, both released in 2008 -- are a very rare self-released 2006 EP and a collection of demos and other oddments. The former is notable for its more conventional indie rock tone and sounds very much like Pecknold finding his creative footing, which he seems to have done by its deeply harmonic final track, "Icicle Tusk." This EP also introduces Fleet Foxes' first pairing with influential Seattle producer Phil Ek (the Shins, Built to Spill) who would go on to helm their first two LPs and mix their third. The latter disc offers a unique look at Pecknold's folk influences from both sides of the Atlantic with the British traditional classic "False Knight on the Road" and the American murder ballad, "Silver Dagger." While both of those tracks saw limited release as B-sides, the fascinating basement demos for "Ragged Wood," "He Doesn't Know Why," and "English House" offer previously unheard sketches of those songs and are some of the highlights of this set. Fleet Foxes' longtime fans will likely have heard the bulk of this excellent set, but the rare cuts, early EP, and lovingly designed packaging with its unique photos and liner notes make it essential.
© Timothy Monger /TiVo

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