On ‘Casually Dressed And Deep In Conversation’, Funeral For A Friend created a post-hardcore debut for the ages

Released in October of 2003, Funeral For A Friend’s debut full-length Casually Dressed And Deep In Conversation is one of the most prominent post-hardcore albums of the early 2000s. The band’s metallic tendencies were tempered with emo and even pop-punk influences (see album opener “Rookie Of The Year” for proof), making for a relatively diverse listen. The release of the album led the band to great commercial success in the UK and across Europe, and it didn’t take long for American audiences to catch on either – with “Rookie Of The Year” appearing in games like Burnout 3.

Of course, Funeral For A Friend would be nothing if it weren’t for their dramatic back and forth, ebb-and-flow post-hardcore that draws from the greats, while establishing their own sound as well. Breakdowns? You have those in “Bullet Theory” and “Red Is The New Black”. Huge choruses? The record is littered with them – especially “Juneau”, arguably the band’s signature track that stemmed from their very early days as a band, and “Kiss and Makeup (All Bets Are Off)”, (available on the Japanese special edition of the album. The synergy between vocalist Matt Davies and drummer/vocalist Ryan Richards resulted in some of the best music of the band’s career, and one listen to it even today and you’ll notice that it’s aged far better than many other bands in the scene. Good musicianship and timeless songwriting will do that for you.

Funeral For A Friend wasn’t your average post-hardcore band around this time, though. Even in their infancy, the band was always influenced by metalcore, screamo, and especially emo bands of the day. Of course, any band that takes their name from a song by Planes Mistaken For Stars has to have some sort of eclectic nature, but yeah. Anyway, the band’s penchant for lengthy, angst-ridden song titles belies much of the album’s true nature – emotional post-hardcore wrapped in both pop-punk hooks and occasional metalcore heaviness. “Escape Artists Never Die” and the aforementioned “Red Is The New Black” are both ambitious in nature, with the latter having some particularly heavy breakdowns and awfully impressive drumming. Seriously, it’s quite the workout!

To say this album launched the band into the stratosphere is an understatement. However, they weren’t the only ones. The UK, Welsh, Scottish, and Irish rock scenes were developing a huge crop of talent at the time. Bands like Biffy Clyro, Hundred Reasons, Million Dead, and Hell Is For Heroes were all putting exciting spins on post-hardcore/alternative rock. But Funeral For A Friend inspired a wave of like-minded bands with a sing-scream dynamic that still is influential today. What an era, really.

Back to top
New Fury Media