FRANKIE COSMOS WITH BIG THIEF AND YAIRMS
Greta Kline’s musical output as Frankie Cosmos exemplifies the generation of musicians born out of online self-releasing. Kline initially built a reputation with her prolific catalog of bedroom recordings and as a performer and advocate of New York’s All Ages DIY scene. The beauty in Kline’s writing does not lie within immense statements and large gestures, but instead can be found in her ability to examine situations and relationships with heartbreaking sincerity. In 2014 Kline released her first studio album, Zentropy. Within months of its release, Zentropy became one of the most critically acclaimed independent albums of the year and was named New York Magazine’s #1 Pop album of 2014.
In 2015, Kline signed to Bayonet Records, immediately releasing an EP where she experimented with writing in an electronic setting. The EP Fit Me In was well received and garnered a Best New Track from Pitchfork. Kline then began recording her next album appropriately titled, Next Thing. Like Zentropy, Kline approached Next Thing by fleshing out several old home recordings, and by writing half of the album from scratch. Next Thing explores new emotional and instrumental territory for Kline, and is slated for release April 1st on Bayonet Records.
Big Thief’s music, rooted in the songs of Adrianne Lenker, paints in vivid tones “the process of harnessing pain, loss, and love, while simultaneously letting go, looking into your own eyes through someone else’s, and being okay with the inevitability of death,” says Adrianne.
Masterpiece, Big Thief’s debut album (Saddle Creek), is filled with characters and visceral narratives, songs that pivot in the space of a few words. Adrianne’s voice and guitar playing speak of rich emotional territory with grace and insight. In her words, the record tracks “the masterpiece of existence, which is always folding into itself, people attempting to connect, to both shake themselves awake and to shake off the numbness of certain points in their life. The interpretations might be impressionistic or surrealistic, but they’re grounded in simple things.
Adrianne met her longtime musical partner, guitarist and singer, Buck Meek, in Brooklyn a few years ago, and they quickly formed a creative bond tempered by the experience of traveling and performing for months on end in old dive bars, yards, barns, and basements together. They recorded a pair of duo albums (A-Sides and B-Sides), and Adrianne showcased her songs on a solo album, Hours Were The Birds.
Now, as a full rock and roll band, with Buck on guitar, Max Oleartchik on bass, and James Krivchenia on drums, they bring a steady wildness, giving the songs an even deeper layer of nostalgia. “These guys feel like a pack of wolves at my back,” says Adrianne, “they make the songs howl and bark with a fierce tenderness that gives me courage.”
After spending last July in an old house that they turned into a studio on Lake Champlain with producer Andrew Sarlo, the resulting collection soars on what Big Thief fan Sharon Van Etten calls “… a real journey, with intelligent stories and twist-and-turn melodies.”
Yairms. Experimental-rock-art-garage-something-punk-psychotropic-kind-of-music. Brooklyn via Durham via Southwestern deserts and some other wide open places. Equal parts hard and soft. Propulsive drums. Snaking guitars. Withering vocals. There’s a obtuse connection to the church lying the background somewhere. Predictions of a future or for the future? By the people and for…
All we have is Part One. Produced by Scott Solter (St. Vincent, the Mountain Goats, Spoon) and mastered by Matt Pence (Centro-matic, Here We Go Magic). Dive in.