As someone with no patience for the Fiery Furnaces' precious noodling, I'm shocked by how much I enjoy their conceptual pop opera of a new album. Loosely based on their choir director grandmother's life, Rehearsing My Choir uses the conceit of having Grandma Olga Sarantos 'play' the role of her present-day self, while Eleanor Friedberger breezily voices the girlish Olga of yore, creating a wistful, wise-ass dialogue between a woman and her own (somewhat fictional) memories. Matt Friedberger matches his imagistic beat poetry lyrics with characteristic thrift-store arrangements, summoning rattling el trains and ghostly sirens through oddball percussion and caterwauling synths, upright pianos and schmaltzy melodies. The imposing Sarantos has a froggy marvel of a voice, and her half-spoken ramblings are captivating, if not entirely musical. Her narrative also provides Matt with the heart and history his fanciful writing sorely needs. As an indie rock album, this is a mess, but as a sound-effect-enhanced spin on children's story hour at the public library, it's quite engaging.