The first time a label works with an artist, perhaps outside of its realm, can be a fairly risky, uncertain, yet very exciting endeavor. Friends Records, the Baltimore label responsible for a lot of early Future Islands releases and side projects, and who have never really gone outside the borders of Baltimore, are set to release Better Than This, the debut LP from Italy’s Parkwave. Their single, “Frames” is an inviting, multifaceted work, juxtaposing trickling start-and-stop rhythms and irresistible floods of sound. The song opens as an unsuspectingly forceful three-chord rocker, but quickly changes into a precise alternation between weighty jabs of guitar, coupled with a ticking drum-section stomping and dancing on the pavement, and a constancy of beautifully melodic down strokes, paired with a hi-hat roll that doesn’t float so much as it does soar over water. Singer Fernando Rennis introduces the band in his opening line, “Pleased to meet you, I’m the fellow of your dreams,” his vocal intensity only building throughout, and playing on the instrumental breaks.
Better Than This will be released in February on Friends Records in the States, and the Italian label, Bizarre Love Triangles, in Europe. You can stream “Frames” below.