Monday, March 4, 2013

Track Review: Warren Franklin & The Founding Fathers - "Every Letter and Souvenir"

Warren Franklin & The Founding Fathers -
"Every Letter and Souvenir"
Label: Count Your Lucky Stars
There's a fairly strong chance you haven't come across the name Warren Franklin yet, at least not knowingly.  Embedded somewhere within the tightly knit Count Your Lucky Stars scene, Franklin is responsible for adding some diversity to the label.  While Count Your Lucky Stars is deeply rooted in the new wave of emo, being home to bands like Empire! Empire! (I Was A Lonely Estate) and Snowing, Franklin's folky, singer-songwriter vibe sticks out from the norm, adding that layer of diversity you heard on the label's latest CD sampler.

It's been nearly two years since Warren Franklin has dropped any new music.  His full length, Your Heart Belongs in The Midwest was his last new output, back in June 2011.  Since then, Franklin has tacked on The Founding Fathers to his moniker, turning his previous solo outing into a full fledged five piece.  Rather than a new band, it has been made clear that Warren Franklin and The Founding Fathers is not a new project, but instead an extension of Franklin's solo work, something that is clearly proven with their first new track as a full band, "Every Letter and Souvenir."

Something always noticeable with Franklin's earlier work was that, despite the strong songwriting, a lot of the songs felt like they were still in their early stages.  The employment of a full band arrangement quickly undoes that feeling.  "Every Letter and Souvenir" sounds more full bodied and complete than anything else in the songwriter has been involved with to date.  The new track very much sounds like the next logical step Franklin would have been taking with his work, whether it had been with the Founding Fathers or not.  The presence brass instrumentation adds a strong layer to the song, a unique touch that hasn't been fully taken advantage of by similar sounding artists.

With "Every Letter and Souvenir," Warren Franklin has finally reached the potential set out by his prior works.  "Every Letter and Souvenir" shows how much progression Franklin has made in the time since Your Heart Belongs in The Midwest, as the track is sure to please already established fans, while bringing on new listeners who made have found the singer-songwriters older material a little too hollow.

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