Finn Brothers

Everyone Is Here

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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Nearly ten years after their first album as a duo, the Finn Brothers returned with Everyone Is Here in the late summer of 2004. There was a considerably larger gap of time separating Everyone Is Here and Finn than there was between that album and Woodface, the one Crowded House album to feature Tim and the first time the brothers worked together since the disbandment of Split Enz. Only four years separated Finn and Woodface, while it took nearly a decade for the Finns to deliver a second album, and quite a bit happened during that time. Each brother released two studio albums and one live album (Tim's was a collaborative live effort, but it could be argued that Neil's star-studded 7 Worlds Collide was collaborative too) and, more importantly, their mother Mary passed away, and all of this feeds into the spirit, vibe, and sensibility of Everyone Is Here. At its heart, this is an album about family -- specifically, about being brothers. This is the first time the Finns have written as directly and abundantly about their kinship, and unlike other famous rock siblings, the Finns' relationship is not only cordial but loving, which doesn't mean that it's any less complex than such legendarily combative brothers from the Everlys through the Gallaghers. Tim and Neil mine their relationship throughout the album -- the word "brother" seems to appear here more often than the entirety of their past work -- and they've come up with a moving set of songs that may not add up to a concept album yet are surely unified by a set of themes. Similarly, despite three different sets of producers (primarily Mitchell Froom, but also Jon Brion and Tony Visconti for individual tracks) the album boasts a unified sound, particularly in comparison to the rather ragged, seemingly unfinished Neil effort One Nil (distilled and strengthened in its American incarnation, One All) or Tim's Feeding the Gods. It's a meditative, expertly crafted mature pop record, filled with subtle sonic textures -- ranging from banjos to harmoniums, all adding colors to layers of primarily acoustic guitars -- that give this low-key, reflective music a rich variety of color. While Everyone Is Here lacks the brightness of much of Woodface, it's the Finn Brothers' strongest collection of songs since that masterpiece, and arguably their most emotionally resonant album to date. With any luck, it won't be another decade's wait until the sequel.

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