donderdag 23 februari 2017

Blue Ceilings. The Franklin Electric

In the past weeks Blue Ceilings came by on one or another of my devices several times. Despite the fact that the music on the album is full of associations to other acts that have come and gone over the past decade and a half, I felt myself warming to the album more and more. So why does an album that is far from irregular attract me?

The easy answer is that it tickles my fancy and relates to things that I know and like. Fact is that it's not necessarily true. I have come to dislike Coldplay almost with a vengeance. Bands like The Boxer Rebellion hardly touch me at all. On the other hand I really like Half Moon Run. So it takes more than just tickling my ears here or there.

The Franklin Electric has a name that fits the bill for the music it makes. It could mean most anything, yet it has a dreamy quality to it and that fits the dream music, with a beat, long soundscapes in sound and a light form of tormented singing, that is its trademark. The second song on the album tells it all. 'Someone Just Like You' is the single as far as I'm concerned. It ought to appeal to all loving this sort of music. The tempo just propels the song forward. The drums are very dominant, while all around is aimed at melody. The bed where singer Jon Matte can sing his heart out over. It is also the odd one out on Blue Ceilings.

Promo photo
The Franklin Electric is a band from Montreal, Canada, that released its new album first in Australia. In a globalised world everything is possible and that undeniably has its advantages. The band toured there first, so it's a logical choice to profit from being there.

There actually is a company called Franklin Electric. It's from Indiana in the U.S. and sells water pumps around the globe. The man behind The Franklin Electric is singer and songwriter Jon Matte. Blue Ceilings is the band's second album after 2014's 'This Is How I Let You Down', an album that passed me by, like most albums invariably do.

In the past the band toured as support for acts like Ben Howard, City and Colour and Half Moon Run. So I'm not surprised at all that these acts are also references for the music on Blue Ceilings. Without touching that quality, imho. For that Blue Ceilings misses more than one song that really distinguishes itself from the pack. The indie-folk (rock) is mostly in the mid-tempo and has a filled, overfull mix. The feel of the album doesn't change a lot, which makes it uniform in sound.

Promo photo
This doesn't mean that Blue Ceilings isn't a pleasant album to listen to. It is however just that. It is safe, colours neatly within each and every line. On the other hand the music convinces me that The Franklin Electric stands for its music. It is sincere and has the quality to build its songs into little monuments. On top of that the voice of Jon Matte is laid out as the centrepiece of The Franklin Electric, which is a big plus. Finally I have to point out the keen eye for details the band has. It adds all these little extras like a rough sounding guitar in 'Burning Flame' or the oohs in the intro of 'Save Yourself'. Search for them and each song has these fine details to enjoy. More time spent with Blue Ceilings takes away from the perceived uniformity.

In short, Blue Ceilings is a nice album. Although it is far from original, there's enough here to enjoy for lovers of indie-folk (rock), who like their albums with a full, serious sound.


You can listen to 'I Know The Feeling' here:

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