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Further Seems Forever's Original Lineup Performs for the First Time in Six Years at Propaganda

Almost exactly a decade ago, heralded Pompano Beach emocore act Further Seems Forever released its debut album, The Moon Is Down. The wildly influential set packed with wry commentary about South Florida tourism ("Snowbirds and Townies") and love's lingering pain ("Monachetti") remains the only full-length document of songs featuring vocalist Chris Carrabba, guitarists Nick Dominguez and Josh Colbert, bassist Chad Neptune, and drummer Steve Kleisath, because two key members departed shortly after its creation.

Although the band continued until 2006 with different players, the original lineup's lore grew, especially with Carrabba's touted work fronting Dashboard Confessional looming large. Then, six years ago, the guys re-formed for a one-off at the Bamboozle Festival, and rumors of a larger-scale reunion have been brewing ever since.

Last August, Alternative Press confirmed that Further Seems Forever's classic lineup was back together rehearsing, and dates trickled out for this spring. Before Further plays anywhere else, though, Lake Worth's Propaganda hosts the most intimate reunion show of them all. The night will feature material from The Moon Is Down as well as EP work and rarities from that era and maybe even some tracks from newer albums. New Times caught up with Carrabba at his South Florida home to discuss why a B-side is becoming a new favorite, the pyrotechnic plans, and Further's inevitable (?) breakup.

New Times: Did you need a significant warm-up to get this material ready?

Chris Carrabba: No, we're ready. I know we're ready. But also, this is where we're from, so it seems like a good excuse to put a show on. And we debated a bit. You know, should we do it after we were done with this run of shows that we have coming up and do it at a bigger place, but ultimately we thought it would be more true to the music we play to do a last-minute small show than to do an overblown too big of a show.

Are there any other special plans for the show?

I think we'll probably reveal things about the songs or the origination of the band. I think that stuff will come pretty naturally. We're working on the songs, making sure we're not thinking about them as we're playing them. You know when you know them so well you just play them? That leaves a lot of room for natural evolution of the show. I'm sure that there will be more than just the songs. But we're not inviting any dancers or anything. [laughs] There's no spectacular light show; there's no dancers. It's just an evening with us and some friends playing some music that we're excited to get the chance to play again.

What are the most timeless elements of the early Further era, and what sounds like the most dated to you?

There are ones that sound relevant still in terms of song structure and dynamics — "A New Desert Life" and a few others. There are others that sound more specific to the time. "Just Until Sundown" may have been the first song we ever wrote. It sounds dated to me, but then again, it also sounds completely charming to me. I still believe it when I hear it. Maybe as songwriters, we don't relate as well to who those guys were when we wrote that song. On the other hand, we all had this tongue-in-cheek feeling about a song called "Vengeance Factor" that was on a compilation early on. It was in the first group of demos we did. When we do it now, although we tease ourselves about it a lot, the last couple of nights, I felt like that was my favorite moment. Just a lot of raw energy. We captured some unabashed youth on that track, and we were embarrassed by that later. But now we're old men, so it's fun to have that.

Fans have fantasized about this reunion for a long time. What original lineup reunion would make you flip personally?

There are a handful. I flipped of course when the Sunny Day Real Estate reunion occurred this year. That was a big deal for me. I think I'd flip for an original Weezer lineup. That would be a big one for me.

Leading up to this, there were so many rumors about Further getting back together. Now that it's happened, does that mean the breakup rumors begin in earnest?

[laughs] We broke up already. You didn't hear? This is the farewell show. I think we're a band that's going to decide what works together when we work together. So I don't know if a band like that breaks up. Or, inevitably, if we're just waiting for the next thing that entices us to make more music together. When we were young and we started this band, it was out of sheer desire to make music together that we could play in front of people. Later, you're trying to make your band successful so that you have another opportunity. But now we're in a place where we can just do it when we're excited about making music together. So I guess in spite of taking all that time off and choosing to not make this band our career, we only do it when we love it.

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Reed Fischer
Contact: Reed Fischer

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