12 Songs, 48 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Wistful dreams and damaged romance unfold with cinematic vividness on Strangers in the First Place. First and foremost, this L.A.-raised artist is a keenly observant tunesmith reworking the folk troubadour form into something personal. His love songs are both tender and rueful, painted with long, flowing Dylanesque lines (“The Closest Exit”) or taking on the dark shadings of vintage Leonard Cohen (“Alibi”). Songs like “It First Occurred to Me” and “Dangerous Neighborhood” match kaleidoscopic imagery to elegantly wrought guitar-centered melodies, letting Francis’ vocals rise from gravelly tones to falsetto heights. Though his work invites quiet rumination, Francis is also capable of engaging pop moments, as “Eighteen” and “Perfectly Yours” show. Martin Pradler’s production is atmospheric and expansive, making the most of such talented players as guitarist Mike Campbell, drummer Jim Keltner, and singer Carla Commagere (Francis’ sister). Smart, insinuating, and unfailingly poetic, Strangers confirms Francis as a worthy heir to the singer/songwriter tradition.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Wistful dreams and damaged romance unfold with cinematic vividness on Strangers in the First Place. First and foremost, this L.A.-raised artist is a keenly observant tunesmith reworking the folk troubadour form into something personal. His love songs are both tender and rueful, painted with long, flowing Dylanesque lines (“The Closest Exit”) or taking on the dark shadings of vintage Leonard Cohen (“Alibi”). Songs like “It First Occurred to Me” and “Dangerous Neighborhood” match kaleidoscopic imagery to elegantly wrought guitar-centered melodies, letting Francis’ vocals rise from gravelly tones to falsetto heights. Though his work invites quiet rumination, Francis is also capable of engaging pop moments, as “Eighteen” and “Perfectly Yours” show. Martin Pradler’s production is atmospheric and expansive, making the most of such talented players as guitarist Mike Campbell, drummer Jim Keltner, and singer Carla Commagere (Francis’ sister). Smart, insinuating, and unfailingly poetic, Strangers confirms Francis as a worthy heir to the singer/songwriter tradition.

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Ratings and Reviews

5.0 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

thepoet ,

Incredible!

I am shocked to see no reviews for this! I've been listening to this album for over a year now, it's on a constant loop. There is no filler on this, every track is beautiful and heartfelt, and at the same time raw and powerful. I highly recommend every song by this artist!

boudoin ,

genius!

Every song is fresh, beautiful, meaningful, and artistically unique. Francis’s work never fails!

Licked007 ,

Francis

The lyrics are beautiful. Robert's voice is so refreshing.

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