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Hefner - Good Fruit

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 17 / 12 / 2001

Hefner - Good Fruit
Label: Too Pure
Format: CDS


This is the new single from London's 3 piece Hefner. Favourites on the John Peel radio show, they have released two albums proper-"Breaking God's Heart" and "The Fidelity Wars" along with a compilatio

This is the new single from London's 3 piece Hefner. Favourites on the John Peel radio show, they have released two albums proper-"Breaking God's Heart" and "The Fidelity Wars" along with a compilation of Radio sessions and rare tracks called "Boxing Hefner". "Good Fruit" comes from their forthcoming new LP "We Love The City"which is due to be released in October. In 1999 they they had 5 songs in John Peel's festive 50 listeners poll, and notably two of these (from "the Fidelity Wars")"Hymn For the Cigarettes" and "Hymn For The Alcohol", came in at 2 and 3 respectively in the poll.The new material has a lot to live up to! Darren Hayman, Hefner's vocalist/guitarist/songwriter, specialises in a unique brand of songs about his failures in love. His lyrics have been compared to Morrissey. However, I would disregard that. Hayman's standards are as high but his lyrics are witty and more direct than Morrissey's often enigmatic teasing. I would say that Smiths fans could easily enjoy Hefner but at the same time Hefner bare little resemblance to The Smith's actual pop sound. A common criticism in the press of bands like Hefner is that they do not overeach themselves or change musical direction. Personally I say this makes them brilliant. They are dependable. You get exactly what you expect and what you want. I don't think I could ever tire of Hefner's sound. 'Good Fruit' is a slower number as opposed to the more uptempo rock of' Hymn for the Cigarettes' or another of their previous singles 'I Took Her Love For Granted'. It is, however, more ambitious musically with nicely understated horn and piano parts. They have cleverly roped in Amelia Fletcher of Marine Research to do backing vocals. This is a good move. Darren is not a technically great vocalist but saves himself with outstanding emotion and energy. Fletcher is less charismatic but is technically stronger. The focus still remains, however, on Darren, as it should. It is good that Hefner are extending themselves musically but still remaining focused on their songwriting. If this continues I see them getting better and better. Lyrically it is as not strong as ' Hymn For The Alcohol', which has had the best lyrics of all their records so far. It is less direct and moving,but I much prefer the tune. It is not as instantly catchy but it has far more depth and a wider range of ideas. It will not appeal to anybody who hates Hefner (why should it?)but if you don't know them this is an essential purchase and a fantastic introduction. Probably their best single yet.

Track Listing:-
1 Good Fruit
2 Jubilee
3 Blackhorse Road

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