premiere – caicos

– featured image courtesy of the artist –

last summer, alex frenkel released promised lands, his first effort under his caicos moniker, a vibrant debut that fused electronic soundscapes with frenkel’s signature guitar playing and vocals. it appears he had more left in the tank; a five-song extended play, dream machines, is due out this spring.

on “genesis,” the EP‘s opening number and lead-off single, palm-muted motifs skitter off of compressed electronic backbeats and acoustic guitar chord progressions, an organic foundation warmed by frenkel’s conversational baritone.

his lead vocal sits comfortably in the foreground, gradually enveloped by the accompanying arrangement until the very final moments, when most timbres exit stage left and frenkel remains with a surprisingly tender sentiment to deliver. an initial glimpse into a project that shows the measured progression of an incredibly assured songwriter, “genesis” is a placid cut, particularly well-suited for chilly days that require a bit extra aural warmth.

dream machine is out may 31st via very jazzed. listen to “genesis,” premiering right here on the dimestore, below.

caicos – promised lands

– featured image courtesy of tory williams – 

alex frenkel’s work as caicos is doused in vibrant polychrome, its rock-solid pop foundations meandering through fields of bucolic folk, minefields of electronica, and the abstractions of art rock.  our first taste of frenkel’s debut project came this spring in the form of “turned again (crux)”; the new york songwriter is now gearing up for the release of promised lands, a seven-song extended play sprawling beyond its twenty-five minute run time.

the aptly-titled opening number, “watercolor (mala),” is packed with saturated hues, a thematic distillation that prefaces many of the tropes that subsequently appear.  while the coursing second single, “vega,” feels like the project’s largest sonic outlier, the straight-ahead misdirection is grounded in the assured coolness of frenkel’s lead vocal, stretching into falsetto with ease and laying the framework for sly future callbacks.

promised lands hits its stride with the soft acoustic shuffle of “southeast,” a relaxing exercise in reassurance that parlays its existence into the first panel of a breezy triptych; “the push and pull” revels in motifs that evaporate in wisps of reversed delay while the standout penultimate cut “salvo” trades acoustic guitars for airy synths and bell-tone counter-melodies.  frenkel saves the title track for his finale, a measured rumination that pares back to just a finger-picked acoustic guitar and proves to be just as compelling as its predecessors.

with just seven songs, frenkel is able to turn in a fully-realized presentation of what caicos is: a stirring electro-acoustic project that relishes nuance and rock-solid songwriting perfectly timed for the changing seasons.  promised lands is due august 10th via very jazzed, but you can listen to it a few days early right here on the dimestore.  dig in.

caicos – “turned again (crux)”

– featured image courtesy of tory williams – 

after establishing his bona fides as a member of the new york-based band gospels and a collaborator of gabriel garzón-montano, alex frenkel has struck out on his own under the moniker caicos.  “turned again (crux)” is the first glimpse of frenkel’s debut extended play, promised land, and it establishes a project equally preoccupied with careful, measured narratives as it is with vibrant collages of pastoral electronic pop.

paired with “turned again (crux)” is a surreal, illustrated music video created by rozalina burkova in conjunction with the wild honey pie.  in case the track’s allusions to medusa and greek mythology weren’t explicit, the accompanying visuals hammer home those references with slightly absurdist humor, blossoming flowers coordinated with the vernal bloom of the song’s chorus.

promised land is due out august 10th via the folks at very jazzed.  get acquainted with caicos below.