Given its origins, this could have been a morbid, self-indulgent exercise. Instead, it’s a fine indie-pop album. Eulogies frontman Peter Walker wrote it after the birth of his son and the death of Dangerbird Records co-founder Jeff Castelaz's son. Writing Fences was his way of dealing with the highs and the lows, and that gives the music depth rather than weighing it down. Walker possesses a sense of melody and a singing style reminiscent of Paul McCartney's better solo work, and the band have a deep sonic bench, capable of buoyant quirkiness and a New Pornographers–like wall of sound. Breezy opener "Out of Style, Out of Touch" already presages trouble, asking, "Is the joy we found a trap where others fell?" The lyrical content gets progressively darker, reaching its heaviest with the bracing "Better Than Nothing" and "Little Bombs." But Walker ends on an optimistic note with "Little Else To Say," singing, "You're gone, you're gone, but you live on and on." He never loses hope, or his taste for a good vocal hook. Few could traverse this territory and come away with an album you can hum.