Why Michael Feuerstack Rules by Audrey King (2014)

 In Why This Rules

Michael FeuerstackWhen Mike Feuerstack sings his songs, he eases the lyrics along, letting the beautiful language move through the music. His strong, careful voice gives the words just enough momentum. The choruses soar, the alliteration is modest — the repetition perfect. I am a fan.

My first 7-Inch was Mike’s band The Wooden Stars. I bought it before I even owned a record player in 1997. Worlds collided for me when Julie Doiron released an album in 2000 with the Wooden Stars as a backing band. Once, in 2009, I walked an hour in Montreal January temperatures to see Mike Feuerstack perform. It was cold. We all kept our coats on. I have spent someone else’s grocery money on Snailhouse merch. I have wished him a happy birthday. I have cooked him dinner. I am a fan.

I’ve been lucky. I’ve seen Mike Feuerstack’s band, Snailhouse, perform twice, ten years apart, in the same Newfoundland pub. The last time he performed there with his band, a hundred voices sang along, their heads bowed or bobbing. I love the half smiled, half bitten, honest and gentle and funny music he makes. I am, definitely, a fan.

A few months ago, I actually cried when I chanced to hear an open mic musician sing one of Mike’s songs. The performer, forgetting the next line, was rescued by the happy crowd. The audience sang out the missing lyric. They knew all his words.

Michael Feuerstack plays at the Cornerstone on Saturday April 12th with Shopkeeper.

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