“Vessel” is the new album from established New York Twee outfit Frankie Cosmos and their first on famed Indie label Sub Pop. While “Vessel” might just be the band’s most instrumentally refined album yet, it doesn’t stray away or do anything to switch up their already established formula. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as Greta Kline’s lyrics constantly retain their charm and vocal contributions from other members are a very welcome addition.
The highlights of the album come in the form of the tracks more reminiscent of Greta’s earlier works. Songs such as This Stuff, Ur Up, and My Phone sound like they’re straight off an album like Pure Suburb with their stripped back instrumentation and a more lo-fi recording style that differs from the rest of the album. They’re all quite short but they’re sweet enough that I keep finding myself coming back to them.
The full band interpretation of Duet is absolutely wonderful. While I still prefer the version from Donutes, the song translates very well in a full band setting. While it’s a standard dreamy bit of Indie-Pop, Greta’s gorgeous loving lyrics are among the sweetest you’ll ever hear.
The song that follows Duet, Accommodate, is probably the best song off of the record. It’s a very upbeat track that showcases how far Greta’s vocal capabilities have come, especially during the very high refrain of “my body is a burden, I’m always yearning.” It’s very upbeat even if the lyrics deal with the anxieties of loneliness, trying to get over a relationship and feeling as if no one cares about what you have to say.
While some of the tracks can feel a bit subdued and forgettable, Vessel is a welcome addition to the world of Frankie Cosmos and a great starting point for those who want to divulge into Greta and co’s incredibly prolific discography. It’s not the best thing they’ve ever released, but if you’re a fan of acts like Beat Happening, Dear Nora, Rose Melberg, Alvvays, Marine Girls and Belle & Sebastian then I urge you to get round to it immediately.
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