FFS – FFS on DOMINO RECORDS, available on CD, Deluxe CD, double album
Once upon a time, approximately 10 years ago an idea was set in motion for Scottish art rockers Franz Ferdinand to try and work some musical magic with fellow pioneers Los Angeles brothers Mael a.k.a. Sparks a band who defy description, trends or decades. Then as soon as it was suggested it hibernated and was quickly forgotten. Fast forward to 2014. The story goes that Franz Ferdinand front man Alex Kapranos was in the local vicinity of his dentist in downtown L.A. when he bumped into local inhabitants the Maels where the idea had blossomed into a reality. True or false this is one dentist story with a happy ending. The collaborative FFS release the self titled new album and it’s a winner from the off. From the opening “Johnny Delusional” a contender for the airwaves across the land is a peach of immediate pop and old art school cunning. “Call Girl” is a paean to a one sided love affair with a dose of biting humour. The deluxe CD and double red vinyl LP squeezes the track listing to an impressive 16 songs that verge from commercial immediacy to more experimental sounds on “So Desu Ne” “Police Encounters” and “The Power Couple”
The epic “Collaborations Don’t Work” is an exercise in understatement that is provocatively misleading to all and sundry when the opposite is so ever apparent in this case. This is more than a marriage of convenience. Both parties gain something in this union. For Sparks it’s an introduction to a new ,neutral fresh generation who may possibly want to rediscover the extensive back catalogue this innovative duo posses and for Franz Ferdinand who after such a bright beginning were starting to stagnate a new refreshed impetus that the devoted loyal Sparks following may take to their collective bosoms. This honeymoon period has produced a beautiful baby.
Reviewed by TONY BARTOLO |