Tagged: Russell Mael

Franz Ferdinand and Sparks collaborating!? FFS!

April Fools Day brought the first new music from the brand new alt-rock supergroup, FFS, made up of the members of Franz Ferdinand and Sparks!  (If you’re following the new Unicorn Booty Tumblr admin’d by yours truly, you got a sneak peek yesterday morning.)

As confusing as it might sound, it sounds… exactly like what you’d expect from combining the two acts… the piano and operatic vocals from Sparks, and the angular guitars and jittery energy of Franz Ferdinand.  Sure, on paper the only thing the bands have in common is putting out some of the best records of the past 40 years (Sure, 30 of those 40 years are held up by Sparks, but if you didn’t like Franz Ferdinand’s Tonight, you’re just wacky) — but “Piss Off” works perfectly. Continue reading

Review: Two Hands, One Mouth: Live In Europe

Cover of Two Hands, One Mouth
Cover of Two Hands, One Mouth

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!  Continue reading

Why I Love Sparks (In Five Songs)

English: Sparks in London, November 1972; Ron ...
English: Sparks in London, November 1972; Ron Mael, Jim Mankey, Harley Feinstein, Russell Mael, Earle Mankey Nederlands: Sparks (band) in London, November 1972. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

by Domenica Clark

For beginners to the decades-spanning career of Sparks, their seminal art-baroque-glam-pop Kimono My House has been often noted as the obvious place to start.  Kimono is super pop-y, accessible and has classic stompers such as “Amateur Hour” and “Talent is an Asset”.  After you’ve found that you enjoy Kimono and are ready to graduate to higher Mael plains, I would suggest mostly looking to their pre and post-Kimono output, most notably their albums Indiscreet and A Woofer in Tweeter’s Clothing.  While Kimono is by far their most accessible album, there are albums and songs that truly illuminate what makes them so darn special in rock music history.  The Mael brothers’ output is notable for their acerbic, witty lyrics and clever songwriting.  The following songs are some of their most wild and unusual and highlight why they are (often) great. Continue reading

Review: The Seduction of Ingmar Bergman

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out! Continue reading

Review: Pulling Rabbits Out Of A Hat

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!

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Review: Sparks In Outer Space

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!
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Review: Introducing Sparks

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!

 

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Review: Propaganda

Cover of "Propaganda"

Cover of Propaganda

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!

Continue reading

Review: A Woofer In Tweeter’s Clothing

Who don’t love Sparks?  I suppose the folks who don’t know who Sparks are might not love Sparks, but that’s only because of plum ignorance.  But REST EASY, reader — we’re here to set you straight by reviewing ALL the Sparks records — and not just by one, but TWO (and maybe occasionally MORE!) Die-Hard Sparks Fan Reviewers.  We shall be your guide into the wonderful world of Mael.  Check it out!

Continue reading

Book Review: Evguénie Sokolov

[Purchase Book]Cover Art

When I bought a copy of Evguénie Sokolov by Serge Gainsbourg, I thought it was, in fact, Serge Gainsbourg by Evguénie Sokolov.  I had no idea that Gainsbourg had written a novella — I just figured the slim volume was a collection of essays about the man; this assumption was boosted by a long introduction by Bart Plantenga and an afterword by Russell Mael of Sparks. (As a fan of both Gainsbourg and Sparks, if I didn’t feel like I had to buy it before, that afterword would seal the deal.)  It was only after I started reading the introduction that I realized what I had.

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