Chris Carrabba reunites with first band Further Seems Forever 

click to enlarge Reunited: Singer Chris Carrabba, second from right, who found big sucess with Dashboard Confessional, is back recording and touring with is  previous band Further Seems Forever. - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy Photo
  • Reunited: Singer Chris Carrabba, second from right, who found big sucess with Dashboard Confessional, is back recording and touring with is previous band Further Seems Forever.

Chris Carrabba remembers it like it was yesterday: the final moment more than a decade ago when he had finally had enough of his first major outfit, Further Seems Forever.

“We were in a rehearsal, and two of the guys got into an argument,” says the singer. “There was some gear thrown around, and one of the guys said something like, ‘That’s it! This is over!’ And I said, ‘You got that right’ and I walked out. And that was it.”

Carrabba, 37, soon would achieve fame with his next project, the emo-defining Dashboard Confessional.
Though he didn’t know it at the time, he was far from finished with Further Seems Forever, which plays The City this week.

Appearing on the group’s edgy new comeback CD “Penny Black,” Carrabba is as surprised about it as his former bandmates: “It’s weird — the band didn’t work because we didn’t realize how good we had it. And now I guess we do.”

In serrated, angular cuts  such as “Engines,” “Way Down” and “So Cold,” there’s a renewed vigor to Carrabba’s vocals, spurred by the Helmet-precise riffs of guitarists Joshua Colbert and Nick Dominguez, plus bassist Chad Neptune and drummer Steve Kleisath.

“The powers these guys have bring something out in me that no other band I’ve been in does,” says the sonically adventurous Carrabba, whose last release was a solo covers collection. “It’s so bizarre and unusual, their approach to music.”

The quintet’s history is just as curious. Once Carrabba quit, he amicably agreed to finish recording the 2001 debut “The Moon is Down,” which wasn’t too difficult since he tracked most of his vocals alone in the studio.

“I think there must have been a feeling from all five of us that if we recorded it, maybe in the process we would sort of mend the fences,” he says. “But it, uh, didn’t quite work out that way.”

Touring nonstop with Dashboard, however, the forgiving frontman often brought FSF along as his opening act. He even helped the band find two new vocalists, and whenever he returned to Florida, he says, “I’d go right back to my regular circle of friends, the Further guys, and we’d be having barbecues and playing Frisbee instead of arguing over songs.”

Offered some reunion shows a few years ago, the band began tinkering with new material. Soon, they had three songs, then six.

“Then we said, ‘Well, let’s really do this correctly, because frankly, it may be the last time,’” Carrabba says. “I’d like to see the past move forward, but worst-case scenario? It’ll close the circle for us.”

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Tom Lanham

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