Two Chances to See the Fiery Furnaces

December 10th, 2009

This is the time of the year when people spend time—too much, perhaps—with their families. Well, imagine working with your sibling every day. That’s what brother and sister Matthew and Eleanor Friedberger do under the name the Fiery Furnaces. They grew up in a musical family in the suburbs of Chicago, but they started their band in, you guessed it, Brooklyn. Matthew handles the majority of the songwriting and in-studio instrumentation, while Eleanor is in charge of the vocals—but the group performs as a foursome in concert. Their debut album, Gallowsbird’s Bark, came out in 2003, and, with their garage-blues sound, the Fiery Furnaces instantly earned comparisons to the White Stripes. They’ve since released a handful of singles, a live disc and seven more studio albums (one featuring their grandmother), the two most recent of which, I’m Going Away and Take Me Round Again, came out in July and November, respectively. With plenty of new material, the Fiery Furnaces are spending their weekend in New York City, tomorrow at Music Hall of Williamsburg and on Saturday at The Bowery Ballroom. See them, above, playing “Ex Guru” in studio for KCRW and then go see them in person.