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A Magazine for Sheffield

Frankie Rose Cage Tropical

Released: 11 August 2017
Cage Tropical

It would be easy to describe Cage Tropical, the newest album by Frankie Rose, as another slice of the eternal roast that is the 80s revival. That would oversimplify an album that takes a minimum of elements from that decade’s music. A better approach would be to admit that as time and tide erode us all, small gems created from the pressures of growing up come to light.

Keeping in line with a seaside analogy, Cage Tropical would be akin to a North Californian beach. Let’s say Morro Bay: early morning, misty atmosphere, slightly comforting. In the cyclical hiss of the surf breaking, you find a rhythm. That’s what ‘Trouble’, the lead single, feels like. A dash of Kraut droning, joyful synths and sweeping atmospheres make for a succinct declaration, a meeting of the past and future in just under five minutes.

The tides will wash up tracks that warm up the foggy morning. ‘Dancing Down The Hall’ is a cold, calculating arrow to the heart, while ‘Cage Tropical’ conveys a fluffier version of The Cure. The introspective ‘Red Museum’ fills the soul with an overwhelming sensation of catharsis. The little instrumental that follows it, ‘Epic Slack’, is like the exhaustion you feel after a fit of anger.

Frankie Rose’s music receives another patina with each release. These accumulated layers yield a hue of washed-out colours, a vintage style that only the wisdom of years can bring. Let the waves continue to erode this lonely beachside.

Sam J. Valdés López