BOUND 3 – Missionnaire


REVIEW: Friko for (All) the Ages


[KILBY COURT_SLC_05252024]

Friko—a virtuosic duo who somehow manage to evoke on stage the energy of like an entire Baroque-rock collective à la Broken Social Scene—have cracked the code of the debut-album live set. They’ve a fiery presence that fills the eager bellies of a chic young crowd, while their encyclopedic post-punk/indie/capital-r Rock references charm the chaperones that might think Friko are too young to know their sonic lineage (their cover of Elliott Smith’s “Ballad of Big Nothing" was noticeably a backrow smash).

Where we’ve been, Where we go from here, Friko’s first realease with ATO Records (My Morning Jacket, King Gizzard, Liz Phair, Stars, etcetcetc) lands somewhere between that new-Baroque sadness of Fevers & Mirrors and the urgency of Read Music/Speak Spanish (they’ve not explicitly mentioned Conor Oberst as an influence, but there are some clear throughlines in vocal style and instrumentation)(accipe hoc: compare Where we’ve been’s cover art with Fevers). But there’s a jnsq in how the pieces comprise an eclectic new whole that positions Friko with a peculiar edge—and a fool-proof shot at leaving a lasting impression.

“Crimson To Chrome” opens the show. It’s sharp and dynamic and circumstantiates for any first-time listeners that Friko came to play. “For Ella” serves as a cadenza of sorts, quieting the crowd for a peek at the band’s palpable charisma (I’m an absolute sucker for dedicating songs to a person in the crowd). And finally, we “Get Numb To It!” for a pithy third movement.

The best part of the show tho is their chemistry. It’s clear that Niko and Bailey (with David on bass) have a real interior. They’re litrly having fun. They laugh together. They sign vinyls and run their own merch (which was a bit lol thanks to a wifi debacle, classique). And even tho there’s an intensity and a loneliness in their music, they still just... smile so much? Like there’s nothing (post-)ironic or hot-headed about Friko’s magnetism. They’re Musicians, they’re an antidote for the Age of Anxiety, they’re an absolute testament, and they’re rly set up to win as New-New Sincerity’s headiest fwends.




Though Wu-Tang’s drop from the lineup set somewhat of a disappointing precedent—don’t get me started on how they were *somehow* second row below LCD like srsly in what world even—the fifth annual Kilby Block Party music festival still delivered a stellar summer kickoff.


₁₀. Courtney Barnett — somehow made it feel like Woodstock or 1969 or smthng

₀₉. Yves Tumor easily the coolest chicest vibe of all the performers (and best afterparty)

₀₈. Slow Pulp — perfect festival music, loads of hot dads there; didn’t read into it

₀₇. Royel Otis — new album; emptied all the oysters in my pocket 

₀₆. Death Cab/Postal Service — there’s something unsurprising about anniversary shows that play an album front to back, but somehow I was in fact surprised at litrly me myself crying during “Passenger Seat” ?? It should honestly be illegal to play tracks 6–9 in sequence, in public, henceforth

₀₅. hemlock springs — she made my best of 2023 list so seeing “eknee1” was sick 

₀₄. Ginger Root — first public announcement of his new movie project Meet You in the Galaxy!

₀₃. Cautious Clay — “Wildfire” and “Puffer” were absolutely it 

₀₂. Joanna Newsom — first festival set in ages, debuted an unreleased song, hit some remarkable notes, and closed with some “Inflammatory Writ.” Also it was maybe the first show where some prat wasn’t screaming about Andy Samberg lol

₀₁. 100gecs — like fifteen friends hadn’t heard them before the festival so as a responsible adult I told them not to listen ahead of time, and then I watched those absolute virgins wet themselves in real time ¯\_( ͡❛ ͜ʖ ͡❛)_/¯



Spotlighting musicians and the artists that help bring their projects to life—graphic designers, hair artists, stylists, chefs, bandmates, set designers, choreographers, etc.


Any culture integrated with the world of contemporary music


Interviewing artists once, twice removed from the spotlight—folks you may not know but whose work you definitely do; featuring photographers, graphic designers, typographers, and directors with a great sense of the zg; advertising provocative new exhibitions, books, and other creative projects; building succinct, cross-genre playlists for intentional listening


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