Frank (just Frank)
VR 010 CD
***The Brutal Wave draws from many rich traditions of guitar-driven wave, minimal synth, and new indie music from Brooklyn respectively—layering lush washes of atmospheric Anglophilic guitars that invoke early REM, Smiths, or the Cocteau Twins above a minimal synth and drum machine fueled backdrop with the caustic intensity of A Place to Bury Strangers, the wavey sounds of Crystal Stilts or The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and the sweeping melancholia of The Depreciation Guild. Equally of disparate origins are the band members themselves: CHRIS was born in New Jersey and grew up with half-Indian KIRTI in Nice in the South of France, although both were schooled in London. Despite such varied influences and backgrounds, FRANK (JUST FRANK) is based in France, and indeed proudly embrace and present a newly moderized version of the highly-overlooked tradition of early ‘80s moody French pop known at the time as the Cold Wave, or ‘La Vague Froide’. Chris and Kirti’s heavier interests have also influenced their sound. What began as a youthful foray into black and death metal has matured into a kinship with the hybridized new black metal scene (christened the 'Black Wave') now emerging in France in 2010 that is also ingesting the influences of the cold wave groups. Initially, the duo appropriated the term ‘brutal’ for their own devices, using it to describe something extremely positive, private and inspiring. This has since morphed into a genre of its own as Chris and Kirti often describe their music, infusing the lauded past with a multi-valenced futurism that drives the up front urgency of this ‘brutal wave.’ It is fitting, then, that Frank (Just Frank)’s album be titled so biographically personal as such, alluding to the duo’s manipulation of opposites and complementary binaries, and through which they inject personal narratives as the icy cold waves crash onto American and British shores.