Archive for the ‘The Fratellis’ Category

[POSTPONED: June 20, 2020] The Fratellis [moved to Jnaury 21, 2021]


I really liked The Fratellis debut album Costello Music.  There was nothing super original about it, it was just bratty guitar rock from a UK band.  They are actually Scottish, which makes them slightly more interesting, right?

Their songs were fast and rocking and often had something interesting in them–unexpected speed up or lyrical twists.

I had more or less forgotten about them. I just read that they “broke up” for a short while and then reunited and have released two albums since then.  I hadn’t heard any of those two.

I might have considered going to see them and now that the show has been moved to January, maybe I’d be free to check them out.


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Because I TiVo, and since I don’t have an iPod, I never heard the Fratelli’s smash hit when it was a smash hit.  However, when I saw them on the Brit Awards, I was impressed enough to check them out.  And I really liked the debut a lot.  Costello Music was brash and snotty and a whole lot of fun.

The follow up, Here We Stand, shows the Fratellis maturing somewhat.  And by maturing that means mostly, slowing down a little and, unfortunately, making their songs a little bit longer.  Now, as anyone who has heard “Flathead” knows, the Fratellils write a great pop song.  Short and to the point.  The songs are simple, concise and very good.  However, on the more mature version, the songs aren’t any more complex, but they are a little longer.  And that’s not really a good thing. Longer songs are good when they have different parts, but just repeating the same parts MORE doesn’t make the song any more dynamic.

Having said that, the album overall is pretty good.  The songs are solid, if a little less catchy than Costello.  When I listened to it as background music I enjoyed it very much, for multiple listens.  (It was only under closer scrutiny that i didn’t like the longer song format).

Unlike most albums, I found that the last few songs were much stringer than the rest.  The first half simply doesn’t resonate.  It’s not bad to listen to, and can be quite enjoyable, it’s just doesn’t stick.  Starting with “Mistress Mabel” (the 6th song!) the album perks up a bit and the songs become more fun.  “Acid Jazz Singer” and “Lupe Brown” are the two real highlights of the album for me.  On these songs their raunchy/ silly/devilmaycare attitude really comes out.  It’s a shame it was hidden for much of the rest of the disc.

I hate to be part of the bandwagon that dislikes 2nd albums by bands.  It must be hard to know if you should repeat yourself or branch out, but I think a bit more repeating and a bit less branching would have served them well.

[READ: July 10, 2008] “Call Me Loyd”

I don’t write about every article that I read in magazines, because honestly, that’d be ridiculous. However, this piece, a memoir, read enough like a story that it would be fun to include here. (more…)

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misfor.jpgfragile.jpgSOUNDTRACK: THE FRATELLIS-Costello Music (2007).

costello.jpgI was watching the Brit Awards recently and The Fratellis won for Breakthrough Act (whatever that means). I didn’t think too much of it, but then I heard some great reviews of their album, so I decided to check it out… it is so much fun! Sarah and I have been enjoying it immensely since we got it. It’s easy to play “spot the influence” or “who does it sound like” and my first thought is that it sounds like early Supergrass. Perhaps not the most obvious sound-a-like (as clearly, there’s some Bowie, Beatles and Clash in there) but the attitude that Supergrass demonstrated on their first two records is here in spades. It’s brash, young, snotty and very very catchy. The sing-a-longs come fast and furious with swooping choruses. (more…)

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