The Fratellis
Here We Stand


3.5
great

Review

by Davey Boy STAFF
October 5th, 2008 | 19 replies | 9,950 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Scottish trio shifts gears & evolve into an arena-rock band with some trademark British twists, to produce a consistently even effort that does not deserve to be overlooked.

In this era of political correctness and clichés, it is surprising to hear brutal honesty nowadays. So when Scottish trio The Fratellis declared that their hit debut album ‘Costello Music’ was “not who we are”, one could not help but be taken aback. Apparently, that catchy, fun & poppy debut was simply to get the band noticed… A means to an end which would allow them to make the rock music they always wanted to. Approximately 20 seconds into opener ‘My Friend John’, it is apparent that there is a significant difference between ‘Costello Music’ and The Fratellis follow-up ‘Here We Stand’.

A crunching guitar riff enters proceedings at this stage, while the catchy chorus this time around is arena-rock through and through. It seems that The Fratellis have turned from loveable larrikins into professional rock musicians. Where-as before they were most comparable to the Kaiser Chiefs & Blur, they now sound more like the Arctic Monkeys & Oasis. The “la la la’s” are almost entirely gone (although piano-driven ‘A Heady Tale’ goes a little overboard), while greater variety exists via a piano ballad (closer ‘Milk and Money’) and a partially acoustic cut (the 1960’s like melody of ‘Babydoll’).

Thankfully, The Fratellis still have the knack for a winning hook, as well as an energy and likeability about them which pleases. The fun nature and vocal rhyming of ‘Acid Jazz Singer’ proves this and may be the closest thing to ‘Costello Music’. Yet, even it includes a thick guitar riff. Lead single ‘Mistress Mabel’ is probably the most accessibly poppy of the lot with its combined crashing of piano, drums & guitars causing an effective background ruckus. Meanwhile, the melodic nature of both ‘Look Out Sunshine’ and ‘Lupe Brown’, the latter including a genuine old-school guitar solo, will most likely result in them being released as singles also.

Yet, most of the highlights come when The Fratellis combine the arena-rock anthems of a band not too dissimilar to the Foo Fighters with a throwback to 1970’s glam-rock akin to T-Rex. In addition to the aforementioned opener, ‘Tell Me A Lie’ best showcases this with atmospheric propulsive verses eventually shifting tempo into a huge chorus and some guitar-related shenanigans in the breakdown. Track 3 ‘Shameless’ also exhibits these traits, while also being one of the many cuts to continue the tradition of fun and cheeky lyrics. “Is it me or are they getting younger every night, just because they can it doesn’t make it alright” sings Jon, who later professes on ‘Look Out Sunshine’ “I’m a cynical c*nt and I’m much too lazy to change”.

While there are no superior standout cuts here, there are few misfires either, with ‘Stragglers Moon’ & ‘Jesus Stole My Baby’ coming closest. Other weaknesses stem from a feeling that this has all been done before since it borrows from any number of British bands from the past 4 decades, as well as a general feeling of over-length. The latter deficiency predominantly arises because many of the songs unnecessarily fade on for too long, bringing the total length of the album to almost 53 minutes.

Entirely self-written and self-produced, it is clear that The Fratellis have matured on ‘Here We Stand’ and it pleasingly results in a consistently even effort which does not deserve to be overlooked. The only shame is that they do not quite hit an attention-demanding home run with any track, similar to what they were able to achieve with both ‘Chelsea Dagger’ and ‘Flathead’ from their debut. ‘Here We Stand’ is best recommended to those listeners with a liking for arena-ready rock that includes some trademark British twists.

Recommended Tracks: Tell Me A Lie, Mistress Mabel, Shameless & Lupe Brown.



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user ratings (93)
Chart.
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Comments:Add a Comment 
DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 5th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm off to search for some album art!

AtavanHalen
October 5th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Doo-do-de-doo-do-de-doo
Do-de-do-da-do-da-doo
Oh, wow, there's a review for this. Awesome!

bastard
October 6th 2008



3435 Comments


hey nobody is reading your review.

shame too, because it's fairly good

Auldy
October 6th 2008



351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

love my friend john.. rest of the album not super special

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 6th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

AULDY, 'My Friend John' was unlucky not to make my "Recommended Tracks" list as I also like it. Actually, a number of songs were unlucky in that regard as I really felt this was an even & consistent album.
BASTARD, there is a difference between people reading reviews & commenting on them. I just hope that I may have convinced a few people that were expecting another 'Costello Music' to give this a listen.
ATAVAN, I'm glad you matched my rating of this album, although I think you may have confused it with a song by The Police. Can you add anything to my thoughts of 'Here We Stand'...???

AtavanHalen
October 6th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'm not sure which record I like better by these guys, both have some amazing songs.
Also, I was singing along to the song that makes the Fratellis the Fratellis.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 6th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm with ya ATAVAN. I like both of their albums as well, despite how different to each other they are.
As for which song you were singing, I have "la la la la" & "Ba Da Bup Ba Da Da Da" as their 2 biggest songs so we must be interpreting their deep lyrics completely differently! LOL!


AtavanHalen
October 6th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Your scat sucks

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 7th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

No it doesn't because "I am the Scatman... Ski Ba Bop Ba Dop Bop”

AtavanHalen
October 7th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

You better quit that scattin', boy.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 7th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

That's Mr. Boy to you.

meta| |mp
October 30th 2008



22 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

my favs : tell me a lie and milk and money

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
October 30th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

All I can say is they better release 'Tell me A Lie' as a single. The whole change in sound would almost be for nothing if they don't.
I didn't mind the piano ballad either. I wouldn't call it a highlight, but it wasn't anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be.

kingcutie
November 9th 2008



6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah i agree, tell me a lie prob the best song on the album. Also think look out sunshine! pretty decent as well

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
November 9th 2008



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Welcome to the site kingcutie & thanks for the agreement on this overlooked album.
And yep, 'Look Out Sunshine' was another song I liked and only just missed out on being a recommended track. I remember listening to that, 'Lupe Brown', 'Shameless' & 'My Friend John' for the final 2 spots on that list.

AtavanHalen
November 9th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Champ, what in the hell is diversity?
Personally, I believe diversity to be an old, old wooden ship.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
May 2nd 2010



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Random bump just because this band may or may not be finished... And too many people hate this album.

JWT155
May 2nd 2010



9205 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I don't hate this album, just a disappointment from their fantastic debut.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
May 2nd 2010



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

But they're so different, they're practically not comparable.

These guys are so entertaining (read: drunk) at awards ceremonies too.



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