A Fragile Tomorrow's new album, It's Better That Way, which will be pressed in deep purple vinyl, is a sonic melting pot, combining many of the band's musical interests and diving into new territory as well. From Krautrock-psychedelia, to indie rock swagger, to Crowded House-esque pop songcraft, to British folk and hip-hop-influenced sampling, the album showcases the diversity of the band under the art rock banner, a term that AFT has adopted in recent years that has allowed them the freedom to explore outside of the confines of genre.
Emotionally dense, and resplendently raw and urgent, both the music and lyrics take one on a beautiful, albeit jolting, ride. The themes in the album weave between personal topics such as anorexia ("All Signs To Amsterdam"), losing a mother ("Another Club"), and the tribute to Sandy Denny ("Sandy"), to critical social/political issues facing us now. "Fraying Wire", a direct response to January 6th, brings attention to America's corrupt political system, where propaganda on the internet shape our belief systems. "For An Eye" looks at the prison and military industrial-complexes that are backed by a harsh capitalistic system, "Look Out" supports salt-of-the-earth union workers, and "Lost In Art" conveys a message of resistance to the conformity of mainstream music and the music industry.
About It's Better That Way, Sean Kelly explains, "It’s an album that is, I think, the best encapsulation of the band we’ve always been and the interests we’ve always had. There are rock songs, folk songs, loops and samples, mandolins, acoustic guitars, synths, straight-up pop songs in the vein of songwriters like Neil Finn, a song heavily influenced by hip-hop duo Madvillain, and some new wave-y angular jangle. It’s really an amalgamation of everything we love and everything we’re interested in exploring. It’s probably best described as 'art rock', a term that throws genre out the window, which is something that appeals to me."
Produced by the band, with additional production by Peter Holsapple (dB's, R.E.M., Hootie and the Blowfish, Continental Drifters), and mastered by Grammy® winning mastering engineer Alan Silverman, It's Better That Way (their 3rd album for MPress Records following their independent Music award winning debut album MPress release Make Me Over in 2014, and 2019's Generation Loss), A Fragile Tomorrow consists of Sean Kelly (singer/songwriter/guitarist), Brendan Kelly (guitar/songwriter/pedal master), Shaun Rhoades (bass), and Josh Kean (drums). Guest appearances include Peter Holsapple (organ, synth, harmonica, harmonium, banjo) and Vicki Peterson (the Bangles, singing on Fraying Wire ).
With the departure of Dominic Kelly to pursue a career in political activism, brother Sean Kelly explains, "Dom leaving the band obviously was a pretty seismic event for us, since this band is something Brendan and I started with him in our basement in 2003. He loved being in this band but was feeling pulled in other directions, so much so that there was ultimately no way for him to devote anything to it anymore. His concern was always that the band should continue no matter what, and so we continued on with more motivation than ever to make a great record. I’m so proud of this record, and feel like it’s the best version of our band that we’ve ever been. And the most exciting thing is that it still feels like there’s more to explore."
Armed with a dynamic musical vision that is experimental as well as politically charged and passionate, A Fragile Tomorrow offers an intelligent, yet contemplative outlook for the future while plunging fist-in-the-air forward to push both themselves - and all of us - towards a beautiful, more united and compassionate tomorrow.
About A Fragile Tomorrow: Members of AFT are founders Sean Kelly, Brendan Kelly, and Shaun Rhoades, as well as new additions Josh Kean (Electric Century -Mikey Way of My Chemical Romance, Sub Pop/Kill Rock Stars indie legend Danielle Howle) and Peter Holsaple (dB's, R.E.M., Hootie and the Blowfish, Continental Drifters) . AFT (Dom Kelly, Sean Kelly, Brendan Kelly and Shaun Rhoades) released 4 albums (Wishful Thinking, Beautiful Noise, Tripping Over Nothing and Be Nice, Be Careful) before releasing their independent Music award winning debut album Make Me Over for MPress Records and Generation Loss. They have collaborated and recorded with Indigo Girls on several projects, and have shared stages with artists including Indigo Girls, Drivin' N Cryin' and Matthew Sweet.