PHILIP FROBOS - 'Vague Enough to Satisfy'
by Philip Frobos
Artist: Philip Frobos
Title: Vague Enough to Satisfy
Label: Upset The Rhythm
Catalogue Number: UTR142
Formats: LP / DIGITAL / BOOK (Hex Enduction Books)
Running Time: 35 mins
Release Date: Friday 22nd October
01. Vague Theme
02. Vacant Street
03. Pool Disturbance
04. No Packages Today
05. Through With Buzz
06. Never Noticed
07. Inflatable Flamingo
08. Saturn Return
10. Singer Not The Song
11. Vague End Credits
‘Vague Enough to Satisfy’, is Philip Frobos’ debut solo album, it is also the original soundtrack to his debut novel of the same title. This lounge-inspired punk album acts as the musical bedrock for the story of a young man who revels in the day to day details (both romantic and mundane) of his experiences in Leipzig and Atlanta. The tone of the record reflects the tides of the protagonist’s confidence and self-doubt throughout the novel.
‘Vague Enough to Satisfy’ rushes straight to the point with it's bossa nova beat and seductive lo-fi musings. ‘Vague Theme’ opens the album with a groove reminiscent of ‘Whammy’ era B-52s while the vocals tell the story of a young romantic confused of his place within a relationship and the city around him.
‘Vacant Street’ proceeds with a hooky bassline, the revolving, cryptic sort that Frobos is known for as a member of Atlanta post-punks Omni. ‘No Packages Today’ is similarly sprightly and circuitous, sounding like the Au Pairs refining an obsession with Bowie’s ‘Lodger’. “I’m afraid that you need more than I can offer” opines Frobos bedecked by shuffling beats and burgeoning waves of saxophone. ‘Never Noticed’ and ‘Through with Buzz’ introduce notes of tension and intrigue to the frisson of the story, “you’re stuck in the same day” confesses Frobos in the former.
Instrumental tracks help to prolong an uneasy feeling of ambiguity too, with compositions like ‘Pool Disturbance’ and ‘Inflatable Flamingo’ taking their musical cue from Henry Mancini. Curious flourishes, a metronomic headiness and shuddering xylophones bring to life the intensely vivid imagery and cynical humor that suffuse the novel.
‘Pathetic’ collides the casual, magnetism of Serge Gainsbourg with tight Cars-style vocals and choruses. Meanwhile ‘Singer Not The Song’ and ‘Saturn Return’ showcase a more sedate approach, languid and arch. ‘Vague Enough to Satisfy’ is a trip, plunging you into a curious world populated by the unexpected.
Philip Frobos' ‘Vague Enough to Satisfy’ will be released on vinyl (180g black vinyl) and digitally by Upset the Rhythm on October 22nd 2021. The novel will be published by Hex Enduction Books in Seattle on the same day. We're also fortunate enough to be selling copies of the book as a bundle with the LP.