Are You Listening?
(Halta Halta Records)
Castaway wastes no time in pumping out the edgy rock style that The Franklys have been honing by touring, legato guitar runs threading through the melee as Jennifer Ahlkvist sings in her best Debbie Harry-goes-Velvet Underground voice. Weasel stabs into earshot straight away and soon the guitars are slashing away on an atypical ascending progression, the bass guitar of Liverpool lass Zoe Biggs punching out the root notes and album drummer Mikey Sorbello pounding away. (The band now have Lexi Clark on drums). A trilling Fanny Broberg solo cuts in@ 2:00. They are probably still using those vintage Hofner axes….
Puppet has ominous bass and angry guitar with a touch of reverb, plus a that’s -telling-him lyric with no holds barred. Jennifer sounds angry. Keeper is less frantic but no less mean in the buzzy guitar sound and martial beat. There’s a band out there called The Savages who wish they could sound like this..and yes.I have seen both perform. You Go I Leave is another lyric of admonition, have the suitors these ladies met been that awful? Or is artistic licence at play? Two and a half minutes in and an emphatic sinister build is handled well, adding to the tension. A real highlight cut on an album full of songs made to play live.
Don’t Kill Your Friends has a sharp Detroit Cobras-style start and that regal Ahlkvist singing, mourning the dearth and death of democracy..perhaps with The Donald in mind? I can’t imagine they are fans. Angular guitar figues illustrate Fanny’s approach to the six-string. Too Tall seems to concern outgrowing a relationship, with appropriate lyrical pronouncements. That guitar sings in the undergrowth like a viper. Imaginarium rides in on the bass until the guitars chime in like a spaghetti western taking shape. Jennifer wonders what actually happened ‘that night’ ..could be a comedown from cider, or worse ? A nightmarish backdrop sustains the mood of dark confusion ; Comedown was a single and is a great stomper from the group, see review elsewhere on our site. Bad News is about a bad cove, who lacks morals and everything else. We see such types attracting attention from attractive females wherever we journey, of course – hence our own family game of Spot The Monkey ie male ‘catch’ accompanying. Twas ever thus, as The Bard opined….
Aggressive original rock from this lively quartet. Hard to be neutral as we’ve met and we’ve enjoyed their shows, which do get better each time.
(Thanks Matt, hi Fanny)
You can watch the official video for new song ‘Weasel’ in this article.
The Franklys debut studio album ‘Are You Listening?’ is released on Friday 23rd June 2017 by Halta Halta Records.