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The Felice Brothers: 2019

The Felice Brothers in Studio A (photo by Thomas Koenig/WFUV)

The Felice Brothers in Studio A (photo by Thomas Koenig/WFUV)



The musical integrity of the Felice Brothers is a given. Their career is defined by steadfast adherence to their own creative spirit. They've never been led astray by commercial-minded producers or followed trends — even ones that they helped start.

After gaining recognition and radio airplay with songs like "Frankie's Gun" in 2008 and "Penn Station" the following year, instead of cashing in on that era's flirtation with banjos and fiddles, they experimented with synthesizers and beats on 2011's Celebration, Florida. That album, and their subsequent tour in support of it, may have illustrated to the Felice Brothers the importance of making music they could represent live on stage.

In my interview with Ian and James Felice, that tour was remembered as something of a charming outlier. The fellas also discussed the use of humor and satire, which are important ingredients on their new album, Undress.

After the departure of some bandmates over the past number of years, 2019 marks a new beginning for the Felice Brothers as a quartet. Led by Ian and James, and introducing a new rhythm section of Jess Hume (the first ever female Felice Brother) on bass and Will Lawrence on drums, the band performed two songs from Undress in Studio A.

[Recorded: 5/10/19; Engineer: Jim O'Hara; Producer: Sarah Wardrop]