In retrospect, 2000 turned out to be a pivotal year for the Super Furry Animals. First, the band put out Mwng, a collection of songs recorded entirely in their native Welsh. Then, less than a year later, they released Rings Around the World, which transformed SFA from a prodigiously gifted rock band that occasionally flirted with electronic elements to an acid-fried, genre-defying collective. RATW was unmistakably the work of SFA, but a bolder version, unafraid to apply their considerable talents to more adventurous pursuits, from the soulful, Marvin Gaye-esque first single, "Juxtapozed with U," to the Aphex Twin-like meltdown "No Sympathy." The band's most recent record, Hey Venus, features late-'60s pop as its unifying theme—horns and vocal harmonies abound. The band also dabbles a bit in Middle and Far Eastern instrumentation. Fortunately, SFA's increased focus hasn't dulled their unique wit: Who else would title a song "Baby Ate My Eightball?" With Times New Viking, who will also be playing their own free show at 7 p.m. at Treehouse Records on Thursday, February 14. 18+.
Fri., Feb. 15, 8 p.m., 2008