Quick Hitters:: Heart Failure Research Unit

Truth be told, when I got an email from Dustin of Heart Failure Research Unit I actually thought it was from one of the medical sites I monitor as a result of my son’s heart condition. I opened it, and reading about a a young Calgary resident and super musician/sound man Lorrie Matheson working together thoroughly confused me. So did the mention of a guest appearance from Rueben Bullock.


HFRU is the cryptic moniker for singer / song writer Dustin Anderson, a PHD student that prefers obscure textures and off-kilter vocals to standard chord progressions and soaring harmonies. Sonic exploration is equally as important, maybe more so in fact, than melody and on his latest LP, Young Animals. Acoustic textures, clanging hand percussion and junkstruments (I think I hear hubcaps on a few tracks) all come together to create Dustin’s own brand of isolated, moody,rustic noise. Dustin’s vocals often drift into that borderline off-pitch, Hayden-inspired eccentricity and when he gets it right (“Won’t You Die”, the piano laced “Now You’re Gone” and the touching “Love Me My Dear”) it works well, but unfortunately, when it isn’t backed by a strong melody, some of the limitations of his voice threaten to derail the listen.


Young Animals is aptly named. It’s got drive and ambition, but probably needs time to fully develop into adulthood. Dustin’s certainly on the right path; if you cherry-picked tracks for a playlist the results hold up nicely (especially some of the more uptempo melodies like “Young Animals” and “When You Were a Kid” that remove the haze). I just think he’s at least one LP away from finding his niche and harnessing the creativity and experimentation to create a more complete listen.

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MP3:: Heart Failure Research Unit - Love Me My Dear
WEB:: http://www.myspace.com/metalandrust



Tags: Heart Failure Research Unit

This entry was posted on Thursday, March 31st, 2011 at 9:21 am and is filed under Canada, Music, Quick Hitters, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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One Response to “Quick Hitters:: Heart Failure Research Unit”

Music Reviews April 4th, 2011 at 1:29 pm

I don’t know how I missed this one. I really like most of the stuff that Lorrie Matheson works on. Thanks for introducing me to Heart Failure Research Unit. I will come back and let you know what I think.

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