Francisco The Man - Loose Ends

by Warwick Stubbs Rating:5.5 Release Date:2014-10-30

Cool. I like albums that start with a ‘lets get this show on the road’ drum-beat, get the toes tapping, the head nodding, shoulders grooving. What I don’t like is when, only seven seconds later, it’s all sacrificed for an attempt at a progressive mood change that feels half-baked.

At least the next track ‘In the Corners’ has a nice, danceable beat with some strong pop-rock vocals and buzzy guitars to sort the mood out with. Leading on from this, ‘Big Ideas’ sounds like a hidden gem from some lost Supergrass session. Cool. How come the first song made me think of wafers then? And why the hell does the next track ‘Loaded’ make me think of ‘Sweet Disposition’ by The Temper Trap?

Seriously! Who puts two rocking, buzzy guitar songs on an album surrounded by wafer-thin rhythms, airily distant vocals and lead bends?

It’s not your fault, Francisco the Man – you have a lot of loose ends to deal with. Progress isn’t intelligently planned after all, and I am not going to hold you to the word of that one big idea. Nevertheless, it’s you that I’m going to write my first cynical and negative review about.

Some bands want to sound like other bands and practically go out of their way to do so; some just can’t make up their mind which band they want to sound like, so instead of taking a little bit from here, stealing a whole bunch from there, and chucking it into the greatest funk blender you’ve ever seen, they simply emulate. And I’m pretty sure you’ve seen how shitty emulators work in shitty, b-grade science fiction movies. That’s if you ever got around to watching shitty, b-grade science fiction movies. I mean, why the fuck would you when you can just as easily watch the best movies any time you want. Especially in this day and age.

Oh cool, the second lost Supergrass gem just appeared. I really hope Supergrass are preparing lawsuits over why another band has stolen their master-tapes and are using their unpublished songs as their own.

Y’ know, I’m probably going to get shit for saying this, what with being on such an indie-centric review site, but I don’t like Radiohead. There I said it. I LOVE ROCK. Heavy rock. Tool, Helmet, Kyuss – that’s the shit for me. But y’ know what? 

What?

Even Radiohead had a few surprises up their sleeves - ‘No Surprises’ for one. That was a surprise. Totally wasn’t expecting that one. But it came on the TV in my little old home in New Zealand and y’ know what I did? I fucking listened to it! I thought to myself 'Huh! They continue to surprise.' (And then I promptly turned the TV off and went back to listening to Tool in an attempt at cleansing my … streeeeeeeeeet … spirit).

Here’s the deal with Loose Ends. It ain’t a bad album. Not by a long shot. I get the feeling that bands stumble on some kind of sound and there’s now enough studio know-how to make the end result ‘sound good’. This band probably even knows how to sound good live. They seem to have it all together. Cool.

But the songs. Oh, the songs are generic. They amble about in boringness at one moment as though they were cowering in the daylight shadow of Pink Floyd (in all their boring and waferish glory), and at other times trying to stir a crowd with pop-rock beats.

Francisco the Man could be a pretty amazing experience live with the right sound-system and a vast, reverb-drenched presence, but this album has nothing more to offer. Nothing that I will ever want to come back for a third time to listen to. Sometimes it sounds like The Temper Trap on methadone (and not in a good way, kiddies!), other times like Supergrass without much enthusiasm.

Overall Rating (0)

0 out of 5 stars