Masters of bedroom pop, Frankie Cosmos made a stop at the Bishop, right here in Bloomington on Nov. 16. The band has been touring in support of their new EP, Fit Me In. Both Frankie Cosmos and their tour friends All Dogs put on unforgettable shows with plenty of enthusiasm and guitar-driven instrumentation. Lead singer and guitarist Greta Kline took some time before their set to talk to WIUX about touring, their new EP, and a very special dog’s figurative Bat Mitzvah. Take a listen, and check out Fit Me In here, as well as All Dogs’ most recent album here.
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Released: 11/13/2015 5/7 Musician/actress Greta Kline, better known by her stage name Frankie Cosmos, has been perfecting her poetic style of songwriting ever since her debut as queen of bedroom pop in 2011. Her 2014 studio album Zentropy impressed fans and critics alike, seamlessly blending pretty guitar instrumentals with wise and always relatable lyrics. This group’s newest release, however, appears to be a bit of a different beast. Although these works both share at their core an indie-pop sensibility, Fit Me In is undeniably an attempt on Kline’s part to experiment with the uncharted sounds of this genre. From the very first second of the opening track “Korean Food”, the listener is immediately engulfed in washy synths and pulsing drum machine beats, closely followed by Kline’s feather-light vocals. Reminiscent of laid back new wave, a large portion of the tracks on Fit Me In sound like something you might hear at the end of a high school prom in 1984- can someone say charming? It would be a mistake, however, to dismiss this EP as synthpop pastiche; Kline’s witty and sometimes even pointed lyrics make these tracks anything but generic. Being a young woman trying to be taken seriously in her profession, Kline has dealt with a considerable amount of typecasting by the industry since her rise to prominence. Kline’s frustration with the fact that young female musicians are evaluated on such a drastically different level than male figures is undoubtedly one of the most prevalent themes on this EP. The track “Young” embodies this sentiment perfectly, opening with the lyrics, “With this I’m scraping by / At least it’s cute that I try.” Bookending this statement track are two endearing love songs that seem to have become a Frankie Cosmos specialty. Void of any cliché fluff, “Korean Food” and “Sand” can only be described as downright beautiful. Full of genuine sentimentality, “Korean Food” is the unadulterated embodiment of young love and all of the airy feelings that come with it. “Sand”, on the other hand, is a short and sweet declaration of affection that could make even the most stubborn pessimist smile. Kline’s deft approach to this exhausted and often generic concept is refreshing in a way that is not only unexpected, but absolutely appreciated. Full of innovation, personality, and wit, Fit Me In is successful on a multitude of levels, easily conquering territory that was previously uncharted for this group. If this EP is in any way an indication of what to expect from Frankie Cosmos’s upcoming LP, we’re all in store for a fresh, insightful, and above all purely enjoyable album. Fit Me In by Frankie Cosmos Frankie Cosmos will be playing at the Bishop on Monday, Nov. 16 with All Dogs and Nice Try. The show starts at 9 p.m., tickets are $10 and can be purchased here.
If you’re at all a fan of thundering drums, bare-boned guitar melodies, or touchingly poignant lyrics, you definitely should have been at the Blockhouse this past Sunday with Girlpool and friends. If you happened to be a little too busy "studying for midterms,” we’ve got you covered. Here’s a little recap of the show for you studious kids who couldn’t make it: The night started off around 8 p.m. with the first opening act: Told Slant. Hailing from Brooklyn, this past Sunday was the first time the group had ever played in Indiana. After being given a warm Hoosier welcome, the band proceeded to fill the room with plodding guitar riffs and tranquil keyboard notes. This serene atmosphere that they had so deftly created was quickly shattered by the booming drum that the group’s front man, Felix Walworth, played with evident skill and passion. Shredding guitars followed suit, forming a pattern that was appeared in several tracks throughout the band’s raw and emotional set. Self-described as “bedroom punk,” Told Slant is set to release their first record some time next spring. If you’re into powerful tracks with sensitive lyrics, be sure to keep an eye out for this fantastic upcoming group. Immediately following Told Slant was Eskimeaux, another Brooklyn-based band that actually includes three members of Told Slant. The lead vocalist, Gabby Smith, charmed the crowd with her sincere lyrics and delightful voice, granting their show an almost child-like innocence. During their track “Broken Necks”, the band urged the audience to repeat the chorus after them: “While you were breaking your neck trying to keep your head up / I was breaking my neck just to stick it out for you.” Endearing the crowd in a way that only call-and-response singing can, Eskimeaux effortlessly created a vibe that could only be described as unadulterated fun. Not only is Smith a member of both Told Slant and Eskimeaux, but she is also the bassist for Frankie Cosmos, a group whose sound is truly out of this world (heh heh). Frankie Cosmos will be playing at the Bishop on November 16th- don’t miss this one folks. After these two amazing acts, the crowd was thoroughly warmed up and 100% ready for the incredible show that Girlpool was about to put on. The female duo from L.A. walked onto the stage with nothing but two guitars and a tangible punk rock sensibility. Although their sound is characteristically simple, Cleo Tucker and Harmony Tividad never fail to seamlessly blend sentimental nostalgia with sometimes crude yet cohesive instrumentals. Their humble demeanor complimented perfectly the sweetly innocent and often vulnerable lyrics that they howled in tandem throughout the set. One example of the duo’s knack for poignant storytelling can be found on their track “Before The World Was Big”: “I just miss how it felt standing next to you / wearing matching dresses before the world was big.” Set against these vocals were the twangy and brazen sounds of their two guitars, the only instruments to be found onstage. The duo nearly whispered their way through “Dear Nora”, a song so heartrendingly nostalgic that it could make anyone yearn for the good ol’ days. Despite their cool attitude, the two were as playful with the audience as they were with their instruments, making us feel as if we were simply listening to a close friend’s band play in their dimly-lit garage (with about 100 other strangers, as one does). All of these elements culminated to a bittersweet finale as the pair played “Cherry Picking”, a track that begins with rather hushed vocals but quickly builds to an emotionally-charged crescendo, ending with Cleo and Harmony nearly yelling the lyrics: “Yes I am picking cherries / I have a hard time staying clean.” With the completion of such a purely sincere show, Girlpool proves yet again two truths that appear to be fundamental to their distinguished sound: 1) that music doesn’t need to be complicated to be masterful, and 2) that you don’t need a lot of instruments to be loud.