Collaborating with artists such as Chance the Rapper, Kanye West, Drake, Frank Ocean and Bon Iver, Francis & The Lights are major players in the world of alternative pop.
Their latest album Farewell, Starlite! has been anticipated all summer by their fans. Here are my thoughts track by track:
“See Her Out (That Just Life)” : The first song of the album opens with a very “in your face” synth
riff paired with heavily distorted vocals. The first verse is mellow-sounding with soft keyboards
and melodic singing. The end of the song is a beautiful synth storm of electronic power that
makes you want to get up and dance.
“Comeback” : With lyrics of losing touch with a relationship and a soft piano riff, “Comeback”
starts off very slow but definitely picks up and begins to pack a punch as the verse continues into
the chorus. A nice touch on this song is the snapping, which is something I personally have
always loved the sound of.
“Can’t Stay Party” : “Can’t Stay Party” gives off a very Phil Collins vibe to me, not only because
the singer sounds exactly like him, but if Phil Collins were to make a modern indie pop song, it
would sound like this. It’s very percussive heavy with layered vocal harmonies and a verse that
leads up to an extremely intense chorus.
“I Want You To Shake” : “I Want You to Shake” is like what I would imagine would happen if
Daft Punk was asked to DJ ’80s dance party. The upbeat drums and percussive synth riff just
make me want to do one thing when I hear this song: dance.
“May I Have This Dance” : Just when I thought Daft Punk was done DJ-ing their hypothetical ’80s
dance party, they decided to throw on the slow dance tune in the form of “May I Have This
Dance.” This song is definitely a beautiful, romantic-sounding, slower dance masterpiece.
“My City’s Gone” : A lone piano opens the track of the song, which is carried on paired with a
heartbeat-like drum pattern. Add in lyrics of misery and loss and you have the saddest, yet oddly
one of the most beautiful, songs on the album.
“Running Man/Gospel OP1” : What starts with a heavy stringed orchestra feature suddenly morphs into an electronic percussion showcase. “Running Man/Gospel OP1” sounds like all the drum machines Francis & The Lights owns got together and had an insane party, which definitely makes this an interesting track.
“It’s Alright to Cry” : These synth riffs are clearly not stopping, as another one is once again the
main feature in “It’s Alright to Cry.” The lyrics, as implied by the song’s title, are very reassuring and positive, which gives the song a very warm, happy feeling.
“Friends” : By far my favorite song on the album, throw in the vocals of Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon
and sneak a little Kanye West cameo in the chorus and you have “Friends” : a beautiful melodic
pop-sounding tune that makes me feel sentimental and excited at the exact same time.
“Thank You” : The album’s outro is very short, yet effective. “Thank You” is a very raw-sounding,
almost demo-like recording of Francis alone with his piano, thanking us for listening.
Overall, Farewell, Starlite! is a great album if you are into alternative pop. Even if you’re not,
Kanye West tweeted in July that “Friends” is his favorite song of 2016 so far and they snagged a
spot opening for Chance the Rapper on his Magnificent Coloring World Tour, so you must admit
they are doing something right.