Fiction Family releases new album “Reunion”
By Alyssa Ong
Jon Foreman’s reputation as the rock star frontman of San Diego’s homegrown band, Switchfoot, shows a different side of himself as a musician as he collaborates for a second time with Nickel Creek’s Sean Watkins. This has resulted in a meaningful arrangement of folk and pop inspired, sing-a-long worthy tunes in the duo’s new project called “Fiction Family” for their second debut album, “Reunion.”
Unlike their first album released in 2009 which was created entirely by Foreman and Watkins alone, they are joined this time by drummer Aaron Redfield and bassist Tyler Chester.
Foreman and Watkins first became friends in 2005 when they met during a San Diego music festival called Street Scene, where the two exchanged emails to keep in touch. With no big goals in mind, the two friends enjoyed just making music together. Soon enough, the motivation to create a new album came naturally and after some silly ideas were thrown about for a band name, the two came up with Fiction Family.
“Usually when two guys make a record together, it sounds cool to call them the something brothers,” Watkins said. “But we’re not, so that’s how Fiction Family came to be.”
The band’s first success came through with their first album called “Fiction Family” when it entered the Billboard 200 at No. 71, selling 7,000 copies in the first week of its release. It also reached as high as No. 5 on iTunes’ top overall album on that first day as well.
Tracks such as the soothing but catchy “Damaged” and the heartfelt yet soulful track first track “Up Against A Wall,” encompasses their thoughtfulness in songwriting.
“I’m stuck with the circus king getting sick of it all,/ Up against the wall,/ Our love is a puzzle that can’t be solved,/ Up against the wall” Foreman sings in the first track in the album.
It is hard to classify the album without noting its versatility in the way each track could appeal to all kinds of listeners, whether it be the well-travelled casanova for “Give Me Back My Girl,” the enthusiastic square-dancer in “Just Rob Me” or the coffee shop hipster nodding away to “Avalon.” “Reunion” is a hard album to put a labelled genre on, but this might be one that has everything in all at once.
“Reunion” was distributed once again by indie record label Rock Ridge Music, just as its earlier album was, but it has been discovered and praised by critics from Paste, National Public Radio, Washington Post and AbsolutePunk who salute Foreman and Watkins for their incredible talents with instruments, vocals and songwriting.
Although “Reunion” was recorded at Switchfoot’s Spot X studio in Carlsbad, CA, their first album was completely recorded and produced only by Foreman and Watkins alone in their home studios.
The band is currently on tour and is rumored to be making a stop at USD for the “To Write Love On Her Arms” Heavy and Light Tour on April 16 in the IPJ. “To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit organization dedicated to support for people with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide. The organization is hosting Fiction Family’s North American Tour.