"I'm sick of this record already," utters Ezra Furman on 'Ordinary Life', smack bang in the middle of Perpetual Motion People. That makes one of us.
With every repeated listen, the album unfurls a little more of its genius. It leaps between '60s rock 'n roll, doo-wop, and country, refusing to settle on a genre or an era, and relishing the ambiguous grey area in which it so often finds itself. Furman's voice echoes this - hovering constantly on the verge of either laughing or crying. Sometimes both.
And this is not just a musical ambiguity. Lyrically, Furman unpacks the rigid boundaries of gender and sexuality with an aching sincerity, documenting his own journey towards gender-fluidity - one he addressed in a piece for The Guardian back in July.
In this regard, his lyrical offerings are at times bold, brash and joyously unsubtle - "My body was made this particular way / There's really nothing any old patrician can say" - at others, they're helmed by a melancholic loneliness. "Can I sleep in your brain tonight, stranger?" he pleads. "Can I rest my bones in your head?"
In 'Watch You Go By', Furman admits, "I can't tell music from heaven / From music from hell." Perpetual Motion People is from neither. It's from some beautiful, ambiguous place inbetween. (Alexandra Pollard)
See the rest of our albums of the year below