Franklin are an indie rock four-piece with a fondness for big choruses. The St Albans-based band have gradually been building a following through their animated live shows, festival slots and a number of high-profile victories in battle of the bands competitions – they’ve also done a full UK tour with Bad Rabbits, and are set to support The Pigeon Detectives throughout the winter. Not bad, considering that they’ve just left school. But for all of their youthful drive, they have an ability that exceeds their years, all of which is showcased in their new single, Dirty Drug.
The track begins energetically and never lets off. Above all, Franklin are excellent musicians, and Alex Frankl and Brandon Hargrave’s dual guitars form the song’s sonic backbone. It’s an ambitious approach that sees the band managing to strike a balance between dingy intimacy and anthemic rock – in terms of where they fall on the musical spectrum, it’s somewhere between Spring King meets Imagine Dragons; equal parts rowdy, equal parts ready. In Frankl, too, they have a frontman perfect for the role. Analogies involving love and addiction are by no means a new venture, but with Frankl’s delivery, you feel as if you’re hearing it for the first time. It’s gravelly, sometimes on the verge of breaking – and a handy weapon that the band possess.
Though the movements they’re making are grand, Franklin are still a band at the very foot of their career. However, if Dirty Drug is anything to go by, that career’s going to be a long and fruitful one. It’s an excellent piece of radio-ready rock, that demonstrates just how far these four young men could go. Keep a watchful eye.
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Words by Niall Flynn