Frankie White, 'Short Fuse' | Album Review | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Frankie White, 'Short Fuse'

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Published October 5, 2022 at 10:00 a.m.


Frankie White, Short Fuse - COURTEY
  • Courtey
  • Frankie White, Short Fuse

(Self-released, digital)

Musicians establish relationships with their fans in various ways: live performances, a social media presence, newsletters and, most importantly, music itself. An artist's first record is not just a collection of songs but an introduction. Frankie White sets a tone of vulnerability and openness with her debut EP, Short Fuse. And that's a solid foundation from which to grow a relationship.

The four-song EP is raw. Stripped-down instrumentation, honest lyrics and spare production quality make for an intimate listening experience, as if White were singing these songs to you in her living room. Each song features some combination of soft piano melodies, simple acoustic guitar chord progressions, light drums and ambient noise. White, originally from Colchester but now based in New Orleans, has a playlist on her artist Spotify page called "anxious attachment" with tracks from Phoebe Bridgers, Clairo, Noah Cyrus and fellow New England artist Genevieve Stokes. You can hear those influences in Short Fuse — this is airy, tender pop music.

If the songs are light in instrumentation, they are heavy in their messages. "How can I be more than a college dropout? Am I too far gone to make my mama proud?" White sings on "college dropout." The EP maintains this melancholic vibe throughout.

"Now that you're not around / I thought I'd miss what we had / But if I think too much about it / now I know it was all just sad," White sings on "if we stayed together." Her despondent openness is relatable and should facilitate making connections with her listeners. Short Fuse is an album that people can turn to for comfort.

White is a young artist and certainly has room to grow. Short Fuse is self-produced, which merits respect, but the production quality leaves something to be desired. It feels like each track has space that needs to be filled. For example, "Crab" has a great bridge and buildup that don't necessarily live up to their potential. Still, it's White's first record, and she has the tools to make great music: a talent for writing songs and a willingness to share.

Short Fuse is an authentic debut from an up-and-coming artist. Listen to it on all major streaming platforms.