We Can Do Anything

We Can Do Anything

by Violent Femmes


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The Violent Femmes spent the bulk of the 21st century either touring their old hits or suing each other over the proper royalty payment of said hits. Gordon Gano and Brian Ritchie buried that hatchet in 2012 and reunited the following year, losing drummer Victor de Lorenzo after those 30th anniversary concerts -- but the pair soldiered on, recording We Can Do Anything, the band's first album of original material in 16 years, with Dresden Dolls drummer Brian Viglione. We Can Do Anything doesn't bear any signs of outright animosity: Gano sounds as twitchy as ever, always poised on the brink of apoplexy, either at himself or some piece of nonsense, while Ritchie shouts back in solidarity or sarcasm. The years have turned the Femmes' rare ballads into something sweet and bruised -- "What You Really Mean" is as romantic and affecting as this group has ever gotten -- and that functions as a nice counterpoint to the numbers where the geekiness feels studied, pushing the tunes toward the realm of novelty. This delicate balance of tone always proved to be a problem for the Violent Femmes -- declarations of angst and galloping cowboy numbers begin to curdle past their sell-by date -- but even if the middle-aged Gano and Ritchie can't resist the clarion call of drunken sea shanties or tunes better suited for a kids records, they do know how to use their craft to not only sharpen the songs themselves, but the record. Even when things get silly on We Can Do Anything, the silliness blows on by, headed toward a bit of revved-up folk or unexpected introspection, and those twists are what makes the album worth hearing.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/04/2016
Label: Pias America
UPC: 5414939935572
catalogNumber: 420

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Violent Femmes   Primary Artist
Brian Ritchie   Vocals,Group Member
Jeff Hamilton   Guitar,Mandolin,Percussion,Ukulele,Vocals,6-string Banjo
Paul Cebar   Guitar (12 String Electric)
Gordon Gano   Banjo,Guitar,Vocals,Group Member
John Sparrow   Cajon
Kevin Hearn   Organ,Guitar,Piano,Accordion,Vocals
Brian Viglione   Percussion,Drums,Vocals,Group Member
Blaise Garza   Bass,Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Contrabass (Vocal)

Technical Credits

Martin Bisi   Engineer
Jeff Hamilton   Producer,Engineer
Warren A. Bruleigh   Archival Assistant
Gordon Gano   Composer
Kevin Griffin   Composer
Cynthia Gayneau   Composer
Kevin Hearn   Cover Drawing
Sam Hollander   Composer,Engineer
Darren Curtis Skanson   Engineer
Kenny Luong   Engineer
Kevin Arndt   Engineer
Dave Katz   Composer
Mark Zellmer   Engineer
Gabe Burch   Engineer
Ian Olivera   Engineer

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