Frankie & The Heartstrings 'Decency'; The Soundtrack To The Summer?
On 10th July the quirky Sunderland boys Frankie and The Heartstrings released their third album titled ‘Decency’ just in perfect timing for summer. Following on from their last release ‘The Days Run Away’ the band have created a record full of melodies and hooks, highs and lows and a whole set of emotions.
Decency opens with a short 45 seconds introduction named ‘ Peterborough Dogs’, in contrast to Frankie and The Heartstrings signature high spirited sound… ‘Peterborough Dogs’ is somewhat bleak and depressing - with saddening guitar sounds along with a muffled dull voice.
However it’s not long before their typical upbeat spirits take over, swiftly going into the title track ‘Decency’ which is only second on the album, the character of the record changes dramatically. Straight away there is an uplifting feel with a very snappy drum riff shortly followed by distinctive and racy guitars, after one last change of guitar riffs we hear front man Frankie Francis’ trademark voice. Overall the track comes across as very animated however could also be described as even being rushed with it being so speedy as well as its abrupt finish at only 1 minute and 43 seconds.
‘Save It For Tonight’ has a particular warmth to it instantly giving off a noticeable summer feel. Slightly softer than ‘Decency’, the song is more light-hearted and breezy. Again opening with drums, the song is then led into a more rhythmic tune with melodic guitar riffs. The song is consistent throughout being generally soft and easy on the ear – it’s the exact kind of song you imagine yourself plodding through the fields of a muddy and sun-filled festival this summer.
‘Balconette’ strikes me as a playful track, the guitar riffs are bouncy and cheerful – it reminds me of the kind of song that should be on the soundtrack of an US film about a bunch of surfers. Frankies vocals go from the more brisk and almost aggressive manner to a delicate and soothing voice – ‘we will be okay’ he sings over and over throughout the song. The song is assuring and blissful – and the contrast of the riffs and vocals mould beautifully well together.
After a couple of slightly darker and more heartfelt songs, ‘Decency’ closes with the Sunderland boys vivacious and signature sound. Harmonious guitar and drums play over the sounds of echoed lad-like’ chanting noises. This is then followed by Frankie's distinctive jittery vocals, it seems this is the track in which brings out his voice the most – wacky yet unique puzzling perfectly with rest of The Heartstrings.
As a whole ‘Decency’ fits in extremely well with the rest of the bands catalogue, the album isn’t particularly risky or ‘out there’ but it generally sounds great and I definitely think that Frankie and The Heartstrings existing fan base will admire ‘Decency’ and be more than satisfied. The record has its heartfelt and sentimental moments then crosses over to an eccentric and kooky kind of feel.
To find out more about Frankie & The Heartstrings click here.
To visit the Frankie & The Heartstrings Facebook page click here.Words by Jolene Ward