Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Wednesday, May 09, 2007 

Through the door kicked opened by the lad-rock of Arctic Monkeys comes the hotly-tipped Glasgow three-piece The Fratellis. Named for the former surname of the bassist and tellingly Italian for 'brothers' they were only one EP old when a recent iPod advertisement featured their track Flathead. The Fratellis have held their position in the limelight with this much-hyped (by the notoriously sedate UK music press) debut. Flathead, whatever way you look at it, does the job incredibly well; infectious, inoffensive, makes people ask: "who's that band from the iPod ad?", and essentially a re-jigging of the same chords and guitar effects The Stones, Supergrass, The Libertines etc. used and used again, and it's ace. It's once you look beyond this (both the song and the songwriting) that this offering begins to lose fizz. Of the same raffish charm school as Small Faces and aforementioned bands, there is a music-hall joviality that some love and others find totally irritating to this album and all that The Fratellis do. While they do have charm and charisma to burn which does go a long way on songs like the opener Henrietta and the single Chelsea Dagger, it is remarkably samey, which is just fine if you're in the mood. On the plus side there is a great use of dynamics thanks to the crafty production of Tony Hoffer, and they are forever stopping and starting songs for a cymbal 'ding' or sharp intake of breath which adds to the urgency thrilling through the album which is no doubt filling indie club floors somewhere as you read this. Chelsea Dagger is already getting airings in UK football stadiums whenever Celtic FC score. While this album does burn with young energy, and is ace for getting drunk to, just like any great idea when you're pissed, it's a bit tedious and lacklustre sober. Still, those who want a party with Glaswegian lads singing along in your face would do well to get this and crank it high. Already winners of BRIT Best Newcomers Award, it seems their star is burning brightly now, let's see who remembers it come Christmas.

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