Scottish band Franz Ferdinand’s newest offering comes across with a strange mix sounds on the first listen. Filled with their signature bumping bass and driving guitar, the steady beats of each song carry each track with the drumbeat rising above the background noise in each track. 70’s stylings on the backing tracks and vocals create a strange sound on certain tracks, this phenomenon especially prevalent when brass is brought in.
The opening songs channel the dance-rock style that made Ferdinand burst on the scene with their 2003 self-titled album. While certain tracks, such as the titular “Right Action,” create the finely tuned and blended tracks that we’ve come to expect from Franz Ferdinand, I’m left wanting by “Fresh Strawberries.” The slow, seductive hook quickly becomes muddled by the incongruity of stale harmonies layered on top of jangly guitar.
Overall, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action creates a strange first impression that is not wholly representative of the subtle eccentricities that made Franz Ferdinand’s first three albums so successful. However, old fans may be made uncomfortable by the closing tracks and new listeners won’t find a memorable track to come back to like what “No You Girls” or “Do You Want To” have done for past albums. Ultimately, Right Action is entertaining for the half hour length, but won’t warrant another listen.
3 out of 5 stars