Following their recent covers of Leonard Cohen’s “Avalanche” and Government Issue’s “Jaded Eyes,” Louisville post-punk trio FOTOCRIME presents the next in their ongoing series of cover songs, offering their rendition of Portishead’s “Chase The Tear,” now playing at Stereogum.
FOTOCRIME founder Ryan Patterson writes, “Covering Portishead’s ‘Chase The Tear’ was the most daunting of the group of songs I selected for this EP. Their songwriting and production are always impeccable, and Beth Gibbons is one of the all-time great singers. Portishead has been massively influential for me and is one of a handful of touchstone artists that endlessly inspire me. They were also very important in my personal interest and exploration of synthesizers and sequencing. The way Adrian Utley and Geoff Barrow combine the organic and electronic is pure perfection.
“‘Chase The Tear’ is the last new original song they have released to date and it’s one of my favorites in their catalog. In attempting to cover it, I tried to deconstruct each element in an almost archeological way then recreate or interpret the sounds using my own instruments. Nick played guitar on the track with perfect vibrato and tape echo-saturated panache while Will sat behind the drum kit for the stripped-down motorik beat. Attempting to sing Beth Gibbons’ tender falsetto was not in the cards for me, so I gave the vocals my own gravely interpretation and invited my friend Janet Morgan to lend her gorgeous voice to the track as well, giving the track her proper English sheen.
“It was mind-blowing to see the footage of Portishead performing again recently and I truly hope they release a lot more music. It was very exciting to cover this song I love so much by a band that means so much to me.”
Stereogum writes, “The FOTOCRIME cover is pretty faithful, though Patterson’s baritone delivery gives it a whole different tone. FOTOCRIME’s version has backup vocals from Janet Morgan, who is married to J. Robbins; Morgan and Robbins are the co-leaders of the Baltimore band Channels.”
Play FOTOCRIME’s cover of Portishead’s “Chase The Tear” at Stereogum RIGHT HERE.
“Chase The Tear” is now playing at Spotify as well. Find it alongside FOTOCRIME’s other recent covers of Leonard Cohen’s “Avalanche” and Government Issue’s “Jaded Eyes” and more HERE.
The final in the series of four cover songs will be unveiled this time next week, in conjunction with FOTOCRIME‘s upcoming Northeast US tour dates. From July 17th through 26th the band will tour through Ohio, Ontario, Quebec, Rhode Island, New York, and Maryland, joined by Population 1280 on all shows and Blacklist and others along the way. See all confirmed dates below and watch for additional announcements to post shortly.
FOTOCRIME Tour Dates:
7/17/22 Happy Dog – Cleveland, OH w/ Population 1280
7/18/22 Meteor – Windsor, ON w/ Population 1280
7/19/22 Bovine Sex Club – Toronto, ON w/ Population 1280
7/20/22 Minotaure – Gatineau, QC w/ Population 1280
7/21/22 Ritz PDB – Montreal, QC w/ Population 1280
7/22/22 AS220 – Providence, RI w/ Population 1280, Blacklist, Infinity Ring
7/23/22 No Fun – Troy, NY w/ Population 1280, Blacklist
7/24/22 Union Pool – Brooklyn, NY w/ Population 1280, Blacklist
7/26/22 Bar 1801 – Baltimore, MD w/ The Holy Circle
While Ryan Patterson, the singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer behind FOTOCRIME, often sings in a rich baritone, he stands in stark contrast to the laconic troubadour persona typically associated with his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. Patterson has spent over two-and-a-half decades adding to the town’s legacy with his impassioned and activist-minded approach to music, his distinctive work as a graphic artist, and his contributions to nearly every aspect of creative underground culture. After his time fronting forward-thinking art-inflected punk band Coliseum, Patterson looked to the urban centers of London, New York, and Berlin for new sonic inspiration, drawing from the passion of his roots while tapping into the sounds of classic EBM and post-punk artists for FOTOCRIME.
Patterson is joined in FOTOCRIME by two fellow Louisville underground legends, both longtime friends and collaborators; guitarist Nick Thieneman (Young Widows, Fool’s Ghost) and bass player Will Allard (Aon Brasi, Xerxes). At their live shows, the trio lines the front of the stage for a guitar and synth-fueled attack, backed by the trusty pummeling of their drum machine. When in Patterson’s House of Foto recording studio, all three band members readily share instrumental duties on new recordings. Allard is a well-versed pianist and drummer and Thieneman is well known for his prowess on the bass guitar.
With FOTOCRIME’s organic-meets-electronic cinematic sweep, Patterson charts the topography of concrete-lined city streets, his voice permeating every opening like a heavy morning fog. The songs are intimate and poignant yet immediate and visceral, reminding us of the communal experience of getting lost in a sea of people while the sound of a bass drum beats on our chests.