Philip Frobos & Emily Kempf unearth lo-fi pop collab from 2011

Philip Frobos and Em Kempf offer an unabashed love letter to glam, pop, and bedroom recording aesthetics


  • Peter Ferrari

What happens when two of the cheeriest and most productive members of Atlanta's indie scene collide? As Philip Frobos (Carnivores) and Emily Kempf (the Back Pockets, Iron Jayne) demonstrate, the result is an unabashed love letter to glam, vocal pop, and bedroom recording aesthetics. Recorded and mixed entirely by the duo themselves and mastered with Allen Taylor (Feast of Violet), Paper Walls was seemingly released on a whim today to celebrate Frobos' and Kempf's shared birthday after sitting unreleased since its recording in 2011. Sonically, the songs exist in a hiss-addled haze of harmlessly eager low-key experimentation. Sparsely arranged vocals, bass, synthesizers and other at-hand instrumentation leave plenty of room for the melodies and tones, never crowding another part or stealing the spotlight. The album tags nod to T. Rex, Deerhunter, "glam," and the Black Lips, among others, all fitting reference points to Frobos' and Kempf's unending effortlessness and gritty, lo-fi charm. Tracks like "Pearls Through Curls" and "Break Up" carry a laid back vibe of a buzzed afternoon spent impersonating musical icons with groovy, unencumbered glee. "If I Could Just Say Your Name" surfs through its sun-bleached and warped vibe coolly pumping out the rhythm with hand claps and intermittent guitar nodding off throughout. It's an alluring aural snapshot that almost never saw the light of day. Maybe the response will be positive enough to realize a live performance or another round of recording. Either way, these eight tunes are enough to keep the lonely hearts company. Stream Paper Walls below:

Paper Walls by Philip Frobos & Emily Kempf

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