The name of the band is more of an ironic corruption of "apostolic faith mission," than a nod to the over-indulgence it implies. It's from a neon sign in Brooklyn from which Thorben Seier Jensen and Sune Slund set off on their search for a musical road-less-traveled. The momentum behind those beginnings might have come from the so-called straightjackets that the two Danes cloak themselves in to compose. Rules. For the first album, there was a dire regimen of late-night recordings in the bedroom of a tiny Copenhagen flat lit only by candlelight. Other essentials included improvised percussion instruments and a drinking requirement.
From the smallness of that space the substance of Alcoholic Faith Mission took shape in their first album, Misery Loves Company. Variously encompassed as a self-indulgent, melancholy, acoustic outreach, Misery made a modest splash that fueled a tour of Denmark, and occasioned the band?s evolution from a varied collective with a core of two, into the five constituents including Kristine Permild, Gustav Rasmussen and Laurids Smedegaard that make AFM today. It also brought forth PonyRec, the band's European label and management firm.
The second album was the result of a half year immersion in an old factory loft nestled in the heart of Hasidic Brooklyn. For this outing, the dogma confined them to using only the things they found within the four walls of the flat to compose and frame every track. Named for the address, 421 Wythe Avenue was heard by many and written about by a good number of bloggers and journalists. The reviews have ranged from mild intrigue to utter adoration.
Three tours of Europe followed, as did label deals in Japan and the U.S. The proverbial icing on the cake came from Canadian indie film, Point Traverse that put four songs from 421 on its soundtrack. As you read this, the album winds its way around the Americas, Japan, and the U.K. Perhaps it leaves an impression there that has begun to define the band and its sound in a new way. Perhaps, as many of the reviewers reckon, it's even a new sound.
Alcoholic Faith Mission's third release, cumbersomely titled Let This Be the Last Night We Care, will be available for general consumption in March of 2010. The band will be touring the U.S. and Japan along with an extensive showing in Europe, including a coming out in England.
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