Flags (Brooke Fraser album)

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Flags
Flags.jpg
Studio album by
Released8 October 2010 (2010-10-08) (see release)
Recorded2010[1]
StudioEastWest Studios, Los Angeles
GenrePop
Length45:16
LabelSony, Wood and Bone
ProducerBrooke Fraser
Brooke Fraser chronology
Albertine
(2006)
Flags
(2010)
Brutal Romantic
(2014)
Singles from Flags
  1. "Something in the Water"
    Released: 2 August 2010
  2. "Betty"
    Released: 6 December 2010
  3. "Coachella"
    Released: 25 April 2011

Flags is the third studio album by New Zealand singer and songwriter, Brooke Fraser. It was released on 8 October 2010 by Sony Music Entertainment in Australia. Fraser undertook a concert tour in New Zealand, North America, the United Kingdom and Australia to promote the album.

The album has been commercially successful in Australia and New Zealand, peaking at No. 3 and No. 1 on the charts of those countries respectively. It has also appeared on various Billboard charts. The lead single, country-pop song "Something in the Water", has peaked at No. 1 on the New Zealand Singles Chart.

Background[edit]

Fraser cited her move to Los Angeles as a major inspiration, saying "I was really frustrated and felt like I needed to get away and be somewhere where I could completely focus...and just to try and get a little bit of head space. It was the best decision we ever made". She called Flags "a graduation".[2]

Writers of tracks on Flags include Fraser, her husband Scott Ligertwood, and Switchfoot's Jon Foreman. The album was produced by Fraser herself,[2] which she called "one of the scariest things I've ever done".[1]

According to Fraser, "Crows + Locusts" was inspired by a farming family, while "Ice on Her Lashes" is about death and grief. "Betty" is based on hiding things. The title track, "Flags", was brought about by cultural identity and injustice.[3]

Release and promotion[edit]

Flags was released by Sony Music Entertainment in Australia on 8 October,[4] and in New Zealand on 11 October.[5] Wood and Bone released the album in the United Kingdom[6] and the United States on 12 October.[7][8]

Flags
Concert by Brooke Fraser
Flags tour poster.jpg
LocationNorth America, Europe, Oceania
Associated albumFlags
Start date26 October 2010
Legs4
No. of shows24

After the album's release, Fraser toured New Zealand, United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, France and Italy.

Date City Venue
Oceania[9]
26 October 2010 Dunedin, New Zealand Dunedin Town Hall
27 October 2010 Christchurch, New Zealand James Hay Theatre
29 October 2010 Wellington, New Zealand Opera House
30 October 2010 Auckland, New Zealand Auckland Civic Theatre
31 October 2010 Hamilton, New Zealand Clarence Street Theatre
North America[10]
9 November 2010 Houston, Texas House of Blues
10 November 2010 Austin, Texas The Parish
12 November 2010 Dallas, Texas House of Blues
13 November 2010 Birmingham, Alabama WorkPlay Theatre
14 November 2010 Nashville, Tennessee Belcourt Theatre
15 November 2010 Atlanta, Georgia Variety Playhouse
17 November 2010 Vienna, Virginia Jammin Java Music Club & Café
18 November 2010 Washington, District of Columbia Rock and Roll Hotel
19 November 2010 New York City, New York Highline Ballroom
20 November 2010 Boston, Massachusetts Café 939 at Berklee
21 November 2010 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania World Café Live
23 November 2010 Toronto, Ontario The Opera House
24 November 2010 Chicago, Illinois Lincoln Hall
Europe[11]
29 November 2010 London, United Kingdom Scala
North America[10]
2 December 2010 Los Angeles, California El Rey Theatre
4 December 2010 Santa Cruz, California Rio Theater
5 December 2010 San Francisco, California Café Du Nord
7 December 2010 Portland, Oregon Doug Fir Lounge
8 December 2010 Seattle, Washington Triple Door
9 December 2010 Vancouver, British Columbia Venue
12 December 2010 San Diego, California The Casbah
Oceania[12]
22 January 2011 Melbourne, Victoria Athenaeum
25 January 2011 Adelaide, South Australia Her Majesty's Theatre
27 January 2011 Brisbane, Queensland The Tivoli
29 January 2011 Sydney City Recital Hall
4 February 2011 Matakana, New Zealand Ascension Wine Estate
5 February 2011 Matakana, New Zealand Ascension Wine Estate
6 February 2011 Tutukaka, New Zealand Marina Reserve
11 February 2011 Gisborne, New Zealand Brunton Road
12 February 2011 Havelock North, New Zealand Black Barn Vineyards
13 February 2011 Martinborough, New Zealand Alana Estate
14 February 2011 Havelock North, New Zealand Black Barn Vineyards
16 February 2011 Palmerston North, New Zealand Arena Manawatu Lawns
17 February 2011 New Plymouth, New Zealand Sentry Hill Winery
19 February 2011 Tauranga, New Zealand Wharepai Domain
20 February 2011 Taupo, New Zealand Unison Amphitheatre
22 February 2011 Upper Moutere, New Zealand Neudorf Vineyards
23 February 2011 Upper Moutere, New Zealand Neudorf Vineyards
25 February 2011 Blenheim, New Zealand Villa Maria Estate
26 February 2011 Waipara, New Zealand The Mud House Winery and Cafe
27 February 2011 Dunedin, New Zealand Logan Park
1 March 2011 Cromwell, New Zealand Olssens Garden Vineyard
4 March 2011 Hamilton, New Zealand Mystery Creek
5 March 2011 Auckland, New Zealand Villa Maria Estate
North America
16 March 2011 Austin, Texas Brush Square
17 March 2011 Austin, Texas The Rusty Spurs
18 March 2011 Austin, Texas The Hilton Hotel
19 March 2011 Austin, Texas St. Davids Sanctuary
Europe
17 March 2011 London, United Kingdom Union Chapel
2 April 2011 Paris, France Nouveau Casino
5 April 2011 Milan, Italy La Salumeria della Musica
9 April 2011 Dublin, Ireland The Sugar Club
11 April 2011 Glasgow, United Kingdom Oran Mor
12 April 2011 Birmingham, United Kingdom Glee Club Birmingham
13 April 2011[clarification needed] London, United Kingdom Cadogan Hall
13 April 2011[clarification needed] Cologne, Germany Luxor
13 April 2011[clarification needed] Hamburg, Germany Gruenspan

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Flags
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic3.5/5 stars[13]
CCM Magazine4/5 stars[14]
Christianity Today4/5 stars[15]
Cross Rhythms10/10 stars[16]
The Dominion Post3.5/5 stars[17]
Indie Vision Music4/5 stars[18]
Jesus Freak Hideout5/5 stars[19]
New Release Tuesday4.5/5 stars[20]
The New Zealand Herald4/5 stars[21]
Soul Shine Magazine4/5 stars[22]

Flags garnered critical acclaim from ten ratings by music critics. Jen Rose of Jesus Freak Hideout gave Flags five out of five stars, appreciating Fraser's versatility on the album, and noted it as a highlight of 2010 music.[19] The Nelson Mail's Nick Ward praised Fraser's maturity on the album, noting the balance of both dark and joyful songs.[23] John Brandon from Christianity Today lauded the "slick production and lighter tone" on Flags, rating it four out of five stars.[15] Russell Baillie of The New Zealand Herald commended Fraser's writing and production skills, rating it four out of five.[21] Andrew Leahey of Allmusic said that Fraser "stretches her boundaries by focusing on ambience and atmospheric textures", and rating the album three-and-a-half out of five stars, dubbing it "a pleasant listen even during its weaker moments".[13] The Dominion Post's Tom Cardy registered that while "Fraser works within the confines of conventional pop and rock...she largely avoids its worst excesses", also rating the album three-and-a-half out of five.[17]

Matt Conner of CCM Magazine gave Flags four out of four stars noting that it "doesn't live up to Albertine", but it was still an impressive effort.[14] Mike Rimmer of Cross Rhythms gave Flags ten out of ten commenting that "With a beautiful voice, intelligent heartfelt arrangements and perfectly crafted songs, Brooke's career continues on an upward trajectory."[16] Kevin Davis of New Release Tuesday gave Flags four-and-a-half stars out of five calling it a "stunning album".[20] Lindsay Whitfield of Soul Shine Magazine gave Flags four stars out of five writing that "Fraser has yet again proven she is not to be grouped with many of the shoe-gazing acoustic acts out there today, she writes exceptionally-crafted songs with purposeful lyrics and catchy backbeats and is as much a great author in my books as she is a great songwriter."[22] Joshua Hedlund of Indie Vision Music gave Flags four stars out of four noting that "The excellent lyrics are delivered in Fraser's simple, soothing, strong vocals."[18]

Commercial performance[edit]

Flags debuted at No. 1 on the New Zealand Albums Chart on 18 October 2010,[24] receiving a gold certification the same week for shipping over 7,500 copies.[25] Flags has gone on to achieve 3x Platinum sales in New Zealand being the 6th highest selling album of 2010.[26] The same week, the album's lead single "Something in the Water" moved up two places into No. 1 on the singles chart. This was the first time a New Zealand artist secured the top positions in both the singles and albums chart since June 2004, when Ben Lummis' One Road and "They Can't Take That Away" were No. 1.[27] On the week ending 24 October 2010, the album debuted on the Australian Albums Chart at No. 3, going on to achieve Gold certification.[28] The album entered the Canadian Albums Chart on 21 October 2010 at No. 80, giving Fraser her first chart success in the country.[29] In the United States, Flags debuted on the Billboard 200 at No. 59 on 30 October 2010. The same week it also appeared on the Rock Albums chart at No. 19, the Digital Albums Chart at No. 14, the Independent Albums chart at No. 9, and the Folk Albums Chart at No. 4.[30][31] Flags was released in July 2011 in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and debuted in the following positions: No. 6 in Germany, No. 24 in Switzerland and No. 33 in Austria. One month on from release, Flags remained in the German top 20 at No. 13 and "Something in the Water" on the singles charts at No. 8. Flags was released in October 2011 in Hungary, reaching No. 15 on the national album chart by week by the 2nd week.[32]"Flags" was released in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland on 7 November 2011.[33]

Singles[edit]

"Something in the Water" was released as the album's first single, on 2 August 2010.[34] Received positively by critics, it was described as "an unexpectedly perky country-pop ditty".[3] The song debuted on the New Zealand Singles Chart of 9 August 2010 at No. 10.[35] It was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand in early October,[36] and, on 18 October, topped the singles chart, succeeding "Just the Way You Are" by Bruno Mars.[37] It only lasted one week in the top position, however, being replaced by "Like a G6" by Far East Movement on 25 October 2010.[38] The song stayed on the chart for a total of twenty-nine weeks[39] and has since achieved double platinum sales in New Zealand.[40] In Australia, the song debuted and peaked at No. 29 on the ARIA Singles Chart, lasting six weeks.[41] The second single from Flags was "Betty", released on 6 December 2010.[42] "Coachella" was released on 25 April 2011.[43]

"Something in the Water" has gone on to achieve extensive radio success in Europe, notably receiving BBC Radio 2 A-list rotation upon release.[44] The single has reached No. 2 in the Dutch airplay chart whilst residing in the top 5 singles chart for 6 consecutive weeks.[33] The single has charted in Poland and Belgium at No. 15 and No. 23 respectively,[33] as well as being certified Gold in both Germany and Italy.[33]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Something in the Water"Brooke Fraser, Scott Ligertwood[45]3:02
2."Betty"Fraser, Jon Foreman, Ben West[46]2:58
3."Orphans, Kingdoms"Fraser[47]3:54
4."Who Are We Fooling" (featuring Aqualung)Fraser, Matthew Hales[48]4:25
5."Ice on Her Lashes"Fraser[49]5:44
6."Coachella"Fraser[50]3:32
7."Jack Kerouac"Fraser[51]3:25
8."Sailboats"Fraser[52]3:18
9."Crows + Locusts"Fraser[53]5:47
10."Here's to You"Fraser[54]4:22
11."Flags"Fraser4:46
Total length:45:16

Personnel[edit]

Credits for Flags adapted from AllMusic.[55]

Charts and certifications[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Brooke Fraser 'Flags' – behind the scenes. Select Live (MediaWorks New Zealand). Retrieved 30 October 2010.
  2. ^ a b Kara, Scott (5 August 2010). "Brooke Fraser Flags L.A. as inspiration". The New Zealand Herald. APN News & Media. Retrieved 15 September 2010.
  3. ^ a b Smithies, Grant. "Singer is heaven sent". The Sunday Star-Times. Fairfax New Zealand. Archived from the original on 1 September 2010. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  4. ^ a b "Flags (Deluxe Edition)". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 11 October 2010.
  5. ^ "Flags (Deluxe Edition)". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 11 October 2010.
  6. ^ "Flags". Amazon.com. Retrieved 23 September 2010.
  7. ^ "Flags". Amazon.com. Retrieved 23 September 2010.
  8. ^ "Flags (Deluxe Edition)". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  9. ^ Fraser, Brooke (5 August 2010). "Brooke Fraser Returns With New Single" (Press release). Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  10. ^ a b "Brooke Fraser Official Website". antiMusic. 3 August 2010. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
  11. ^ "Brooke Fraser Tickets". Live Nation UK. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  12. ^ "Brooke Fraser to tour Australia 2011". MAX. 2 November 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  13. ^ a b Leahey, Andrew. "Flags – Brooke Fraser". allmusic (Rovi Corporation). Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  14. ^ a b Conner, Matt (1 December 2010). "Brooke Fraser: Flags (Wood & Bone Records)". CCM Magazine. p. 41. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  15. ^ a b Brandon, John (2010). "Flags". Christianity Today. Christianity Today International. Retrieved 21 October 2010.
  16. ^ a b Rimmer, Mike (16 June 2011). "Review: Flags – Brooke Fraser". Cross Rhythms. Retrieved 11 January 2014.
  17. ^ a b Cardy, Tom (28 October 2010). "Brooke Fraser – Flags (Sony)". The Dominion Post. Fairfax New Zealand. Archived from the original on 2 November 2010. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  18. ^ a b Hedlund, Joshua (7 January 2011). "Brooke Fraser – Flags | Reviews". Indie Vision Music. Retrieved 11 January 2014.
  19. ^ a b Rose, Jen (11 October 2010). "Brooke Fraser, Flags". Jesus Freak Hideout. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
  20. ^ a b Davis, Kevin (19 October 2010). "Brooke Fraser [Flags]". New Release Tuesday. Retrieved 11 January 2014.
  21. ^ a b Baillie, Russell (14 October 2010). "Album Review: Brooke Fraser Flags". The New Zealand Herald. APN News & Media. Retrieved 28 October 2010.
  22. ^ a b Lindsay, Whitfield (19 October 2010). "Brooke Fraser, Flags: Album Review". Soul Shine Magazine. Retrieved 11 January 2014.
  23. ^ Ward, Nick (14 October 2010). "Brooke Fraser – Flags". The Nelson Mail. Fairfax New Zealand. Archived from the original on 17 October 2010. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
  24. ^ a b "Brooke Fraser – Flags". Hung Medien. charts.org.nz. Retrieved 19 October 2010.
  25. ^ a b "Latest Gold / Platinum Albums". RadioScope. Archived from the original on 12 August 2011. Retrieved 22 December 2010.
  26. ^ "Flags – NZ albums chart 2010". RIANZ. Archived from the original on 27 August 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2011.
  27. ^ "Chartbitz: by Andrew Miller". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 20 October 2010. Archived from the original on 17 July 2010.
  28. ^ a b "Brooke Fraser – Flags". Hung Medien. australian-charts.com. Retrieved 19 October 2010.
  29. ^ a b "ALBUMS : Top 100". Jam! (Canadian Online Explorer). 21 October 2010. Archived from the original on 26 October 2010. Retrieved 26 October 2010.
  30. ^ a b c d e "Brooke Fraser". allmusic (Rovi Corporation). Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  31. ^ a b "Brooke Fraser". Billboard. e5 Global Media. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  32. ^ "Flags – Hungary Albums Chart". mahasz. Retrieved 28 October 2011.
  33. ^ a b c d "Flags – November 2011 European Releases". Brooke Fraser Official Website. Archived from the original on 31 October 2011. Retrieved 28 October 2011.
  34. ^ "Something in the Water – Single". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 6 August 2010.
  35. ^ "Top 40 singles (#1733)". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 9 August 2010. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  36. ^ "Latest Gold / Platinum Singles". RadioScope. 3 October 2010. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  37. ^ "Top 40 singles (#1743)". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 25 October 2010. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  38. ^ "Top 40 singles (#1744)". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 25 October 2010. Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  39. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Something in the Water". charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 22 November 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  40. ^ "Something in the Water". RIANZ. Archived from the original on 27 August 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2011.
  41. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Something in the Water". australian-charts.com Hung Medien. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  42. ^ "Betty – Single". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  43. ^ "Coachella – Single". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 9 May 2011.
  44. ^ "Radio 2 – Playlist". BBC. Archived from the original on 7 March 2011. Retrieved 22 October 2011.
  45. ^ "'Something in the Water' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  46. ^ "'Betty' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Archived from the original on 18 September 2012. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  47. ^ "'Orphans, Kingdoms' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  48. ^ "'Who Are We Fooling' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  49. ^ "'Ice on Her Lashes' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  50. ^ "'Coachella' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  51. ^ "'Jack Kerouac' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  52. ^ "'Sailboats' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  53. ^ "'Crows + Locusts' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  54. ^ "'Here's to You' Work Search Results". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  55. ^ "Flags – Brooke Fraser". AllMusic (Rovi Corporation). Retrieved 2 November 2010.
  56. ^ http://lescharts.com/showitem.asp?interpret=Brooke+Fraser&titel=Flags&cat=a
  57. ^ "MAHASZ – Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége". mahasz.hu. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  58. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Flags". Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 13 November 2011. Retrieved 25 December 2011.
  59. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Something in the Water". top40-charts.com.
  60. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2012 Albums". ARIA. Archived from the original on 5 February 2014. Retrieved 24 October 2013.