Awash in pastel colors and choruses of “I love you,” HoCo Fest headliner Frankie Cosmos charmed rather than rocked the hot, Friday night crowd last weekend. While head-bobbing, shouting, and cheering were present, more abundant was the overwhelming sense of childhood wonderment. This was the “bedroom pop” darlings’ first show in Tucson, and their debut was made all the more powerful by acting as school teachers rather than rock stars.
And what would a class lesson be without a fire drill? Yes, even when the fire alarm was tripped mid-performance, Frankie Cosmos frontwoman Greta Kline instructed everyone to remain calm and collected, as if her music wasn’t doing that already.
Despite the sweet simplicity of most of the songs performed, Frankie Cosmos’s indie textures were surprisingly on-point. With keyboard/guitar interplay, concussive drumming, and even an organized dance routine, the performers showed they had much more going for them than sentimental lyrics. It also probably helped that the crowd sang along to just about every song.
A live band sounding exactly like they do on their albums might seem a disappointment to some, but when the albums in question are as joyous, sublime, and introspective as Frankie Cosmos’, the tightly crafted sounds of the studio come as a welcome to any ears.