Published on June 16th, 2011 | Jonny Abrams
SINGLE O’WEEK: Jon Fratelli – ‘Baby We’re Refugees!’
Following on from the ecstatic sunshine chug-along of ‘Santo Domingo’, ‘Baby We’re Refugees!’ serves as further titillation ahead of the release of parent album Psycho Jukebox, expected on July 11th.
In the apparent absence of an official video, this’ll have to do – but you can always buy the single version.
Much like its predecessor, ‘Baby We’re Refugees!’ bops in a Beck-ier direction than Jon’s work with The Fratellis and provides a steady platform upon which his rasping, whiskey-cracked voice truly shines. Teamed with Tony Hoffer’s refreshingly raw production, this single oozes character and the kind of enthusiasm which is much rarer than it should be.
Repetition is a dangerous game to play in the world of pop music but, by the time Fratelli is staple-gunning “Carry me home / Carry me home, carry me / Won’t somebody chase this pain (or pane?) from my window?” into your consciousness, it feels much more like a classic than an irritant. Roll on the album.
Rocksucker says: Four Quails out of Five!
Some of This Week’s Other Singles…
Fink – ‘Yesterday Was Hard on All of Us’: A far cry from your typical Ninja Tunes output, this broodingly atmospheric, finger-picked ballad comes courtesy of one Fin Greenall, a genre-straddler par excellence who decided to try his hand at ‘acoustic singer-songwriter’-dom on fifth album Perfect Darkness.
The main riff from which the song barely deviates is pleasant enough but the rhetorical question-heavy lyrics (“Where do we go from here?…Who can we trust?”) just about puts us off this one. To his credit though, Fink has a fantastic voice and a knack for creating a burning, Alexander Wolfe-like intensity.
Rocksucker says: Two and a half Quails out of Five!
Foo Fighters – ‘Walk’: Without being by any stretch of the imagination a poor song, this really does sound more or less exactly like you’d expect it to.
Dave Grohl’s formula is undeniably effective – grungy pop with a minor chord on every fourth bar for instant songwriting kudos – but we’ve heard it all before on tracks such as ‘Learn to Fly’ and ‘Generator’ from 1999 album There is Nothing Left to Lose. “I’m learning to walk again,” sings Grohl on this latest in a long line of 7/10-scoring Foo Fighters singles; and such revision of long-since-established practices certainly shines through on ‘Walk’.
Rocksucker says: Three Quails out of Five!
My Chemical Romance – ‘Bulletproof Heart’: “Graviteh don’t mean too much to meh / I’m who I’ve got to beh / These pigs are after meh”. Why? Just…why? You’d need to have an infant’s tolerance for sugar and hyperactivity in order to sit through a whole album’s worth of this but at least this one’s got a decent chord change or two.
Rocksucker says: Two Quails out of Five!
Buck 65 – ‘Paper Airplane’: Any long-standing fan of the Canadian MC/turntablist would have been forgiven for thinking “oh crikey, he’s gone soft” after hearing the first minute of this. Dolorous acoustic finger-pickings, softly-warbled female guest vocals (in this case courtesy of Jenn Grant), a video shot in Paris in which Buck portrays a silently lovelorn sailor: all the hallmarks are present and correct for a ‘sell-out’ job smothered with denial-friendly artsiness. However, once Buck wrests control of the track, his gruffalo flow takes it for a brooding yet typically thoughtful stroll through the gardens of string-laden, gently psychedelic sampledom, rendering ‘Paper Airplanes’ an oddly satisfying listen by the end of it all.
Rocksucker says: Three and a half Quails out of Five!
The Feeling – ‘Set My World on Fire’: “You set my world on fire / I love you more every day / You can run, you can run but don’t stay long / I love you more every day”. It’s fluff alright, but it’s more towards the ‘pocket lint’ end of the spectrum than the ‘lovely fluffy bunny’ end of the spectrum. Come to think of it, just the words ‘end’ and ‘fluff’ should provide ample indication of precisely what Rocksucker thinks of this sickly sweet pissdrizzle. It’s a dead cert to be played on Hollyoaks though; and, after all is said and done, isn’t that the point?
Rocksucker says: A solitary quail!
Black Veil Brides – ‘Fallen Angels’: We are all prone to moments of existential crisis, casting aspersions over our transient lives spent pottering around on a dying rock amidst an unquantifiably vast and possibly godless universe. However, a certain amount of faith is restored each time the cosmos throws back at us something of such infinitesimal significance that you will find yourself attempting to telekinetically manipulate the nearest tree in order to establish whether or not you are in fact The Almighty Himself.
Meet Black Veil Brides, a kind of supermarket cola version of Kiss, if that’s not being too kind. “We only want to be ourselves”, they sing. Clearly they fail to see the irony in this.
Rocksucker says: Absolutely No Quails Whatsoever
If you would like to purchase any of the singles reviewed above, please visit some website or other. For more information, please visit www.wikipedia.com.