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Costello Music

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Album Review

Brash, melodic, and imbued with a more-than-healthy sense of British rock tradition, the Fratellis and their debut album, Costello Music, come across almost like a caricature of bands like the Libertines, Dirty Pretty Things, and Arctic Monkeys — but at least it's a flattering one. The Fratellis take themselves a lot less seriously than some of the other laddish bands popular in the U.K. in the late 2000s, and emphasize hooks and fun rather than samey-sounding rock. Songs like "Baby Fratelli" and "The Gutterati" have a singalong simplicity, and it feels like the band puts as many "la la la"s and "ba da ba"s into each song as they can — and then try to cram in a few more. Costello Music's best tracks go even farther with the band's fun-only agenda; it's easy to hear why "Flathead" — which switches between grinding, aggressive verses and a downright giddy chorus with more of those "ba da bop a dah" hooks — was picked to soundtrack a fittingly day-glo, kinetic iPod TV commercial. The outstanding single "Chelsea Dagger" is just as vibrant, a swaggering glam rock nugget with pints-aloft choruses. "Henrietta"'s loopy catchiness owes a debt to vaudeville or musical comedy, and not just because Jon Fratelli sings "wa wa wa waaaahhh" along with the guitar solo; "For the Girl," meanwhile, has a melody so strong, it could've been a hit anytime between the '60s and the '90s. Elsewhere on Costello Music, the Fratellis show off their knowledge of other corners of rock history: "Vince the Lovable Stoner" is appealing faux country-rock; "Doginabag" adds some blues and grit to their sound; and "Creepin' Up the Back Stairs" nods to '50s rock and skiffle. Even when the band gets a little more complex, as on the darkly twangy "Got Ma Nuts from a Hippy," they keep the focus on rapid-fire rhythms and air guitar-ready solos. Indeed, Costello Music is so high-energy, it's almost too much to take in one sitting. Then again, this music wasn't made for sitting, it was made for dancing yourself silly. They might not have the cultural or historical impact of some of their peers, but the Fratellis are a lot of fun in the moment — whenever that moment is. [A Hong Kong version was also released.]

Customer Reviews

Bittersweet

Finding this album is a mixed blessing. Not because of the music though, the album is fantastic. A unique sound from all that other rubbish being produced at the moment. There's hardly a dud song on the album. The first 5 songs alone are worth the price, all rating 4 & 5 stars. The downside is that is surely won't be long until the radio stations pick it up and flog the heck out of it. Buy it now and enjoy it before everyone else clues on.

Great band, with a great sound

The band has a great and original sound thats fun to listen to and i havent been disapointed buy any of the songs i bought from them

Party Record of 2006

This album by these Scottish lads has been at the top of most played for me in 2006. Tracks like Chelsea Dagger and Henrietta are a snapshot of what these guys can do. Get it.

Biography

Formed: 2005 in Glasgow, Scotland

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

A brashly melodic indie rock outfit from Glasgow, the Fratellis feature vocalist/guitarist Jon Fratelli, drummer Mince Fratelli, and bassist Barry Fratelli. The witty trio played its first show in early 2005, maintaining that the band's moniker was merely an homage to Barry's original surname (however, other rumors suggest that the Fratellis borrowed it from the nemesis family featured in Steven Spielberg's film The Goonies). Such trivia only added to the Fratellis' growing appeal upon their performance...
Full Bio
Costello Music, The Fratellis
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