The Next Thing is the next thing from New York’s Frankie Cosmos; a full length album of mostly full length songs to follow up previous releases 2014’s Zentropy and the 2015 EP Fit Me in as well as the hoard of band camp releases from Greta Kline, the prolific woman behind it all. There’s a lot of stuff out there, and rumours of a full LP have been circulating for a while now, with singles Sinister and On the Lips surfacing earlier in 2016 to the delight of those expectant few.
While Fit Me In represents the quiet understated intimacy of her previous bedroom pop recordings, The Next thing steps beyond, replacing synthesisers with guitars and assembling a full band to flesh out the dulcet tones of her poetic reflections. The result loses none of the personality that we are used to however, and the introduction of a full band in the recording process only adds to the depth and integrity of the Frankie Cosmos sound. What we get is a brilliant display of the lo-fi indie pop that seems to be emanating from the states recently with the likes of Car Seat Headrest and Angel Olsen. It’s melancholic and isolated but strangely optimistic both in the tones of the songs and Kline’s lyrics.
An incessant bass line thrums through songs like If I Had a Dog adding a rhythmic pace to the LP, with Kline’s melodic vocals either floating gently over the accompanying guitar parts or emerging from the fuzz with piercing harmonies, signalling breaks in the song. Her poetic, sometimes morose lyrics seem to make the album however, with its top picks including second single On the Lips and I’m 20, a song which starts with the line “I’d sell my soul for a free pen, on it the name of your corporation”. I’ve been there Frankie, I’ve been there…