This ‘Fratellis’ article was written by Evie Myers, a GIGsoup contributor
It’s difficult to believe that it’s been almost ten years since The Fratellis stormed onto the music scene with Costello Music and possibly one of the catchiest songs of the decade, Chelsea Dagger. The Scottish band have grown in popularity and musical talent since then, and are back with their fourth album Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied.
A truly eclectic mix of Indie classics, electronic grooves and mellow, emotional tracks sum up the versatility of The Fratellis. Every song on this album has a unique charm that only grows as you listen to it again. There must have been something in the water over in L.A because this is quite possibly the best we have seen from them in years and certainly betters the below-par 2013 release ‘We Need Medicine’.
Opening Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied with floor filler, Indie classics was probably one of the smartest decisions The Fratellis made with this album. It catches your attention immediately with Me and the Devil, with its beautiful piano building into a toe tapping riff, and lyrics so addictive, you’re guaranteed to be singing along with the chorus before the song is out. Impostor (Little by Little) has similar infectious qualities and lays down the foundation for the remainder of the LP.
Released as a single and a music video, Baby Don’t You Lie to Me has rock classic written all over it and has shades of Chelsea Dagger running through it with the catchy, upbeat guitar. Thief also has the signature Fratellis style shining through with tantalising guitars and wonderful harmonies and is in fact very reminiscent of Flathead. These tracks in particular transport you back to the mid-noughties and reminds us why we fell in love with The Fratellis in the first place. These are true indie-disco tunes.
The bass at the beginning of Dogtown lays a rather delicious groove and is only improved by the overture of guitar and brass accompaniment. This rather ambitious track is pulled off beautifully and The Fratellis have to be commended for their arrangement. This is a real highlight of Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied and certainly offers something a little extra to proceedings.
The album slows with Rosanna, Slow and Moonshine but at no point does this mean a loss of impact on the listener. Slow is a particularly stunning track, with true emotion shining through. Not that we would ever forget but Jon Fratelli reminds us just how talented a singer he is in this stripped back, piano led piece. Moonshine’s melancholic tones perhaps make the album exit on a slightly deflated note, but is an accomplished piece nonetheless.
The Fratellis have achieved something rather special with Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied: an album that constantly keeps you hooked. This is no easy task but their pleasant mixture of styles intrigue and excite the listener, making you glad of their diversity. The most important aspect of all is that they have not lost the unmistakable Fratellis essence, charm and sound.
Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied is now available through Cooking Vinyl Limited.