It’s a truth well acknowledged that collaborations are never average. When two artists come together the result is either magic or something awful. It’s quite easy to pinpoint which category newly formed supergroup FFS – a collaboration between alternative rockers Franz Ferdinand and eccentric band Sparks falls into. Their conjoined style on the album definitely creates a unique sound but one that struggles to find an audience.
The first track Johnny Delusional is the best track of the album but it still has its problems. As the first track of the album it sets the tone for the strange clash of sounds that plague every track. The only reason this song is bearable is because it’s catchy, however the vocals, the piano and the guitar don’t seem to blend. Call Girl tries to explore a more electro sound that begins in a sort of Arctic Monkeys style but just fails to really garner an emotional response. The simple reason for this is because the strange lyrics don’t seem to connect to the musical feel of the song. It’s rather unfortunate because there are many layers to their tracks, however the layers don’t seem to work together. Dictator’s Son is a nice track the really works with a buzz sound and tackles a falsetto.
Little Guys From the Suburbs struggles to find interest with a slower tempo that highlights the flaws of their collaboration even more. Police Encounters is a little funkier with a fun sound and cheeky lyrics. Save Me From Myself houses a cool guitar layer that works together with the vocals. Collaborations Don’t Work is a tongue-in-cheek track that aims to be ironic but rather proves the exact point of its title. This collaboration simply doesn’t work.
Overall, this album is disappointing because while it does show musical exploration, the opposing sounds just don’t mesh well together. The super group has tried to take the best elements from Franz Ferdinand and Sparks but in turn they have created a sound that doesn’t cater to any of their audiences. This album feels too mainstream for Sparks fans and too strange from Franz Ferdinand fans. From an odd collaboration comes a very odd album.