Five Right Now: Frankie Morrow

Frankie Morrow describe themselves as a ‘Female-led, Scottish five-piece ready to melt yer heart.’ And on their debut EP, Blue Parrot Backpackers Hostel, they pack a lot into just six songs. Graceful indie folk and jangle pop reverberates and seeps into the senses – pulling you into a lighter world of dreams feel that more attainable.

To coincide with the EP’s release, we spoke to the group to find out the five songs they have on repeat right now:

Martha Hill – Right Out My Head

NEEV (Acoustic guitar/Backing Vocals/keys) – I’ve always really liked Martha Hill and the way she picks out vocal melodies that have so much movement and character around her arrangements. Loving this one in particular because the production is so dynamic, but keeps a lovely group of acoustic guitars and vocals at its core. Big production inspiration for me at the moment, and the lyrics are so intelligent too.

Black Midi – Sugar/Tzu

Duncan Carswell (Drums) – Black Midi has always been a band I can’t stay away from for long, and the track Sugar/Tzu has totally gripped me. From the surreal nature of the instrumental, to the brutal dynamic shifts between sections, resulting in a song that blurs the lines between jazz and rock. Performances on this track are delivered with pure energy, speed and accuracy, an addictive combination that perfectly complements the intensity of the story being told. The song, Sugar/Tzu, and Black Midi, have opened my eyes to a whole new world of music, fuelling me with inspiration to experiment moving forward.

Black Country, New Road – Concorde

James Smith (Bass) – I can’t remember who in FM recommended this band, but I’m so glad they did. Ants From Up There is one of my favourite albums at the moment, and it’s really difficult to pick a track, but I really enjoy the songwriting, structure and production on Concorde. I love the dynamics of the song, how it feels like it keeps building and how they’ve been so careful in the production to find a brilliant balance of all of the instruments and vocals. The masterpiece of this song is the lyrics though, they feel so personal and direct yet you could take your own meaning away from them. My favourite line is ‘But I’ll know you’ll be there, the Sandman inside.’ 

Julian Lage – Auditorium

Samuel Nicholson (Electric guitar) – On the several, glorious occasions on which I have had the fortune of hearing Julian Lage live, he has always been accompanied by the audible despair of every aspiring jazz guitarist in the room (myself included). When I first listened to his new record, View From A Room (produced by Margaret Glaspy), Auditorium made me well up with teary joy – the gentle interplay from the legendary Bill Frisell joining his band, Dave King’s stirring momentum (also huge Bad Plus fan!) and Jorge Roeder’s loving groove all make for one of my favourite Julian Lage tracks of all time. I have always loved Jazz for highlighting the chemistry of band members and this line up feels like it could be one for the books. 

Katy J Pearson – The Hour 

Frankie Morrow (Lead vocal/electric/acoustic guitar) – I’ve been loving Katy J Pearson’s new record, Sound of the Morning, and just recently saw her headline the Electric Ballroom with Neev last month. It was brilliant! Howl is an absolute tune – the brass, the hook – Willow’s Song has a beautiful switch up thanks to drumming by Black Midi’s Morgan Simpson on it, but the standout track for me is The Hour. It’s a classic folk song – vocal and acoustic guitar, nothing more, nothing less – and it is so powerful. It sounds quite mediaeval actually. It has an eternal and haunting quality to it. We are in the process of writing our next set of tunes and it has really reminded me to come back to the bare bones of a song at its very core. Plus, I loved learning the fact that the reason it was so stripped back was because she had fake nails on in the studio that day hahaha. Talk about making a virtue out of necessity!

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