Album Preview: Philip Selway’s “Familial”

Written by

Philip Selway’s solo album “Familial” is streaming in its entirety now as part of KCRW’s Album Preview series.

From DJ Eric J Lawrence:

familial_The knee-jerk reaction to any solo project from a mega-famous band’s drummer might be shudders among music fans everywhere.  I mean, even Ringo Starr gets flak, right?  But when Philip Selway, the percussionist from Radiohead, announced he was going to release a solo album titled “Familial” this summer, the response in the music zeitgeist leaned more towards curiosity than outright concern.  And now that we have a chance to hear the whole thing, it appears there is more reason to cheer than to jeer.  In fact, it might prove to be one of those rare side projects you look forward to exploring as much as the original band.

Ably assisted by members of Wilco (including drummer Glenn Kotche), Soul Coughing and Lisa Germano, Selway sings, plays acoustic guitar and generally offers something you might not expect: beautiful, hushed tunes in a classic singer/songwriter tradition, with hints of the dystopian angst that is a hallmark of the Radiohead sound.  This is no vanity project – it is a fully formed record from an artist who takes a well-deserved step into the spotlight.  But Radiohead fans, never fear – Selway is in the process of working with his longtime bandmates as they record their forthcoming album.  We’re glad there seems to be time for both.  Familial is a welcome detour from a musician who has helped anchor records from one of the most successful bands of the past two decades.

“Familial” Track listing:

1. By Some Miracle

2. Beyond Reason

3. A Simple Life

4. All Eyes on You

5. The Ties That Bind Us

6. Patron Saint

7. Falling

8. Broken Promises

9. Don’t Look Down

10. The Witching Hour