BioOn a cold winter night in 1995 the cover of INCHES was drawn on a cocktail napkin and then divided into nine sections. Each section of the napkin represented the cover art for a single; each of the nine singles was released on a different independent label. The completed puzzle of that original design and the resulting album is now the triumph, entitled INCHES.
Racking up 18 songs with an accompanying full-length DVD that highlights one of Les Savy Fav’s much-storied live-shows, INCHES documents an ambitious young band’s evolution. The songs compiled on Inches are sorted in reverse chronological order with "Dollar Bin" (7”#9, side B), the newest of material, first and "Rodeo" (7”#1, side A), the oldest of material, last. As INCHES progresses one can hear Les Savy Fav devolving; fully matured ideas revert to noisy babies. Sophisticated lovers become horny teenagers. The listener is invited to feel part of this unique process of historical reduction.
Since 1995, Les Savy Fav (Lay Sah-vee Fahv) has released three full-lengths (3/5, the Cat and the Cobra, Go forth) and one EP (Rome: written upside down.) However, INCHES is the one album the band has been writing ever since their inception. The concept of INCHES was actually the second idea Les Savy Fav had. The first was naming the band. To the stalwart dedicates that have collected the 7”s as they’ve been released, INCHES will offer the chance to hear the songs in the context in which the band has always conceived of them. For the majority though, Les Savy Fav expects that INCHES will provide a fresh and educational sonic insight into the band. Plainly stated, for those who have never heard of Les Savy Fav (no embarrassment required), INCHES will provide the perfect pool to dive head first into the depths of Les Savy Fav.
Seth Jabour’s revolutionary guitar playing weaves melody and discordance, while drummer Harrison Haynes keeps the foundation dancing in time with Syd Butler’s stylish bass lines. This allows front man Tim Harrington’s performance to command his audience to sing and recite fables of entropy vs. evolution, clarity vs. confusion, or staying up all night vs. sleeping all day.
Les Savy Fav has, for the most part, remained a word-of-show, fanatical-fan-driven band. They have done it on their own, in the old-fashioned way, touring and making music. They aren’t too cool for any school. They answer their own e-mails. They have maintained their independence and have built their consistently sold-out-show following without the championing of a major label, mainstream radio or MTV. Syd Butler started Frenchkiss in order to provide a place where bands retain complete artistic freedom. The label encourages open-minded music and considers every band an equal voice at the family dinner table.
Individually, the members of Les Savy Fav have fostered their own, varied artistic pursuits. Syd Butler mans the helm of Frenchkiss records. Seth Jabour is a successful Illustrator. His work has appeared in Volkswagen ads and in several magazines and can be seen online at Sethtom.corn. Harrison Haynes is an established painter. His creations are garnering a substantial press kit of their own and can be seen at harrisonhaynes.corn. Tim Harrington recently started his own textile company with his fiancee Anna. Their work can be viewed at deadlysquire.corn. All total, Les Savy Fav’s dedication to the arts as individuals only strengthens their collective and cohesive musical family.
The Rhode Island School of Design graduates moved to Brooklyn in 1996 and used an abandoned Knights of Columbus hall as an apartment and practice space. It was there that their influences and distinct talents merged into an indescribable sound. Their music has been linked to Brainiac, The Talking Heads, The Pixies and Sonic Youth. However, Les Savy Fav, Godfathers of the Brooklyn sound – are more likely to end up on contemporary New York City band’s inspiration lists rather than comparison lists. Les Savy Fav is one of the most genre-defining, influential and organically driven musical ensembles of the past decade.