Friday, August 29, 2008

Frampton Brothers - File Under F Failure

Produced by Uno in Seattle ("42 hrs from Pittsburgh with us at the wheel"), the Framptons institutionalize their despair on File Under F (for Failure) but retain a sense of indignant amusement and ironic wit about the futility of it all. (Actually, on balance, the album is not as downhearted as the title promises.) "The Beginning of the End of the Fun Years," "My Little Sense of Doom," "Budge" and the title track mine frustration and pessimism with stirring rock guitars and a minimum of loser self-pity; on the other hand, "Drag," "Fucked" and "Shit-Colored Glasses" turn the loathing outward. Masley's day job as the Pittsburgh paper's music critic meet his fanboy sensibilities to fun insider effect in "Dressing Room" and "She's Reading All the Wrong Fanzines (Again)." All buoyed by music that is diverse, tuneful and catchy (don't miss "Evil Twin" and the country-western "Drunk"), File Under F proves that failure is a perfectly valid option.
After five years away from the studio and two years after they broke up, Ed Masley and Sean Lally reformed the Frampton Brothers in 1999 to give the world one last chance to find out what they were missing. And the results were certainly worth the effort; File Under F (For Failure) is easily the band's best album to date, boasting a ragged-but-right intensity their previous work only hinted at and a forceful punch that's a far cry from the polite power pop of their debut. File Under F's subtext is the story of a band that failed to grab the brass ring, and if songwriter Ed Masley is bitter about his failure to become a rock star (or at least quit his day job), these tunes are the best sort of therapy, spinning tales of life on the bottom of the rock food chain that are by turns hilarious and heartbreaking. "The Beginning of the End of the Fun Years" may be one of the best songs ever about a band grinding to an uncomfortable halt, and "Dressing Room" is a well-aimed rant at how little it takes to turn someone into the worst sort of rock star. There's no small irony in the fact that the Frampton Brothers made a great album about how they didn't make it, but from a musical standpoint, File Under F (For Failure) is a blazing success. ~ Mark Deming, All Music Guide

1.Dressing Room
2.File Under F [For Failure]
4.The The Beginning of the End of the Fun Years
5.Freak Show
8.Gimme Back My Empty Head
9.My Little Sense of Doom
10.Shit-Colored Glasses
11.The The Devil [Or Anyone Else Who's Better Than You]
12.The The Man Who Should Be King
14.I Know She Don't Like Slow Ones
15.Evil Twin
16.She's Reading All the Wrong Fanzines [Again]
29.Potato Song
30.Monkey Bowl

.. Year: 1999
.. Label: Cacophone
.. Country: USA (Pittsburgh)
.. Bitrate: 192 kbps
.. MySpace: XX
.. Wikipedia: XX
.. BUY ME: Amazon/CDNOW
.. Home-Page: XX

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