Archive for November 1998

BigO review

A review by Lee Chung Horn that appeared in the December 1998 issue of BigO (Singapore)…

<…> Talking about irony, one album that had its tongue firmly in sarcastic cheek must be Liz Phair’s 1993 debut Exile In Guyville.  Okay, Phair’s from Chicago, but we’re not talking about whitechocolatespaceegg here.  It’s fellow Chicago native Edith Frost we’re interested in.  Her second full-length album, Telescopic (Drag City), was one of 1998’s best.  Frost can sound uncannily like Phair, both have undemonstrative voices that set in sharp relief the powerful irony of their words.  The solipsistic songs on Telescopic seldom vroom above mid-tempo.  But like favourite novels, it’s an album that reels you in more and more.

Alternative Press review

A review by David Daley that appeared in the December 1998 issue of Alternative Press

Some of 1998’s best albums have been made by indie-rockers lifting a glass to the end of irony.  Call it a longing for honest emotion, for music that’s simply beautiful and emotionally moving.  Indeed, powerful albums this year from Cat Power, Elliott Smith, David Gedge’s Cinerama, Mike Johnson and Richard Davies, not to mention the Elvis Costello – Burt Bacharach collaboration, may someday make the late ’90s seem as halcyon an era for sophisticated singer-songwriter stylings as the early ’70s seem, retrospectively, with Nick Drake, Tim Buckley, Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen.  Add another name to that list, as well — country-tinged Chicago chanteuse Edith Frost, whose second full-length, Telescopic, far surpasses her first-rate debut, Calling Over Time.

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Raygun interview

An interview by Steffie Nelson (with photos by Braden King) that appeared in the December 1998 issue of Raygun magazine…

The Ice Queen Melteth
With a hand from Royal Trux, Edith Frost comes in colors

Edith Frost is boy crazy. And she makes no attempt to hide it. "Oh my god!" she groans over the phone from Chicago. "It’s bad! It’s so awful! I’m soooo on the prowl! I’m desperate!" Check out her online diary (edithfrost.com) and the recent entry which stands out most is the one that reads, "Wow, a whole day without getting a crush on somebody."

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W.H.O.L.E. Music Club (Minneapolis, MN)

Played at the W.H.O.L.E. Music Club (Univ. of Minnesota) with Melissa Smith and Matt Marka

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, backing vocals)

Ryan Hembrey on tour

Ryan Hembrey photo by Edith FrostBassist Multi-instrumentalist Ryan Hembrey before a show on our tour with Archer Prewitt. I’m not sure which one… does anyone recognize that stage?


Lounge Ax (Chicago, IL)

With: Archer Prewitt; Sam Prekop

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, background vocals)

Mabel’s (Champaign, IL)

With: Archer Prewitt; Sam Prekop

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, background vocals)

Mercury Paw (Louisville, KY)

With: Archer Prewitt; Sam Prekop

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, background vocals)

Chicago Reader review

A review by Monica Kendrick that appeared in the Chicago Reader

Frost has long been summed up and drowned out as a melancholy, country-inflected club chanteuse with a tendency to drift into the ether. Part of the delight of her earlier recordings was the close listening they required, but on her latest, TELESCOPIC (Drag City), she’s decided to pump up the volume, and in spots she can get downright psychedelic or jarring. Whether she’s more confident about turning up or just sick of being taken for a shy folkie, it’s a nice unexpected turn and makes a good case for her staying power.

Club 770 (Madison, WI)

Played at Club 770 (Univ. of Wisconsin) with Retsin; Archer Prewitt; Sam Prekop

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, background vocals)

Minnesota Daily interview

An interview by Eric Block that appeared in the Minnesota Daily (Minneapolis, MN)…

Delicate Frost

Rising talent Edith Frost has traveled a winding path — Chicago by way of New York by way of Texas — to bring to us her latest offering, Telescopic (Drag City).  The 34-year-old singer/songwriter’s second full-length, following last year’s Calling Over Time, raises the volume knob a few decibels, but retains the melancholy warmth and sadness of her previous work.

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The Rocket review

A review by John Chandler that appeared in The Rocket (Seattle, WA)…

For lack of a better description, Edith Frost is usually lumped in with the alt-country crowd, which is, I suppose, fair enough after her country-flecked debut, Calling Over Time, and her supporting roles with such fellow Chicagoans as the Pine Valley Cosmonauts and sad-boy strummer Chris Mills. Yet we may have to rethink conventional wisdom after only one track from her Neil Hagerty / Jennifer Herrema-produced follow-up, Telescopic — "Walk on the Fire" is swollen with buzzy guitars that sound like an army of angry cellos and some lumbering, boxy drums.

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Sketchy review from Minneapolis

A review by Jon Dolan that appeared in the City Pages (Minneapolis, MN)…

Not quite as poetic as she wants to be, Edith Frost is kind of like a Sandy Denny for the Chicago post-rock crew.  On country-noise records like the just-out Telescopic, she writes dim melodies that threaten to turn into 150-watt folk-pop tunes.  And on tunes like 1997’s lovely ballad "Too Happy," Frost drowns her sad, sketchy lyrics in a kind voice that ought to communicate in complete sentences.

Chicago Tribune review

A review by Rick Reger that appeared in the Chicago Tribune

Edith Frost’s fine debut record unveiled a folksy singer/songwriter whose introspective music deftly waltzed along the country- pop borderline, but her new effort, Telescopic, tentatively explores the art-sploitation ethos of Chicago’s Wicker Park underground. A mix of clean C&W hickory and piquant avant-rock fuzz, Telescopic is an engaging, if less immediate, record that suffers only from its static mood and pacing.

Vinyl Solution (Grand Rapids, MI)

Instore performance with Retsin; Archer Prewitt; Sam Prekop

My band: Ryan Hembrey (bass, guitar, accordion); Archer Prewitt (drums, melodica, harmonica, background vocals)

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