Been listening to nothing but The Fratellis lately.
Here’s some context: For Thanksgiving break, my family broke tradition and came to visit me in Chicago. While I would’ve liked to go home to see my friends (and animals), it was a nice change of pace. We made a small turkey, finally saw the new James Bond movie, walked around Michigan Avenue while it was all lit up for the holidays. All in all one of the best Thanksgivings I’ve had in a while. (Though if you’ve ever tried living in a one-bedroom apartment for five days with your parents and brother, I don’t recommend it.)
I especially had fun spending a few days with my little brother. Well, I say little… He’s 16. And he’s 2 inches taller than me. And I can’t really put him in a headlock anymore. But in my mind, he’s still my baby brother. And I refuse to admit he’s of driving age.
Anyway, through long El rides and lazy Saturday afternoons, Terry and I listened to a lot of music these past few days, and for whatever reason, we found ourselves rocking out to our favorite weird Scottish band. I got hooked on The Fratellis way back in seventh grade when a friend shoved her iPod earbuds at me and said, “You gotta listen to this.” She was right. I, of course, shared them with the person I knew would immediately fall in love with them: Terry.
The Fratellis broke up back in 2009 or so, and my brother and I made a pact years ago that if they were ever to reunite and if they were ever to play a show in the United States, we’re going. Doesn’t matter where or how much or how the hell we’re going to get there, we’re going. So you can imagine our excitement this summer when we learned they had reunited. Now, just waiting on those U.S. tour dates. Until then, we’ll just scour the net for every obscure and only-released-in-Japan B-side, and we’ll sustain ourselves with side projects and solo albums.
And surprisingly, Jon Fratelli’s solo album is totally kickass. It’s definitely the work of a more mature songwriter, so it lacks some of that wild weirdness we fell in love with on “Costello Music,” but there are a couple songs here that make me remember why Jon Fratelli is still the king of knock-‘em-dead hooks. Terry played “Santo Domingo” for me months ago and it’s been stuck in my head since. It’s got a little bit of a gun-slinging, devil-may-care vibe, and I haven’t gotten tired of it yet.
So, until we get those elusive tickets to a non-existent Fratellis show, my brother and I will be listening to every piece of music the Fratellis have ever touched. (Jon’s side project Codeine Velvet Club is also worth a listen.) With brash hooks and crazy singalong choruses in everything they do, what’s not to like?