Frank LoCrasto has conjured a record of tropicosmic sounds for the endless summer of your inner mind. Entitled ‘Lost Dispatch,’ the collection’s 11 tracks unfurl like a bootleg performance of a cocktail jazz group where it’s always the organist’s turn to solo, and someone spiked the punch bowl. Sunset psychedelia nestles alongside passages of space age jazz and dusty, analog exotica.
LoCrasto is a go to keyboardist for artists like Cass McCombs, Pat Martino, Fruit Bats, Parquet Courts, Greg Osby and Okkervil River. His keys have appeared on over 40 albums, while ‘Lost Dispatch’ is the Texas-born, Brooklyn-based artist’s fourth record under his own name.
Set opener “Travelogue” defines the album’s intention with swooning island melodies, bird song and percussion that shushes like slow-washing waves, soundtracking a hallucinated world of bedroom rainforests where water droplets slip from waxy leaves, fizzing on overheated amplifiers. “Secret Cove” laps along as woodwinds and synths nudge around each other like eddies in a psychedelic stream. The muted piano of “The Islander” is like the ghost of jazz heard on the leeward breeze of a beach slipping into darkness. Throughout, the record balances serpentine exercises for eyes-closed inner exploration with lush, open-air tropicalia.
Sketches for the record began eight years ago in LoCrasto’s former Brooklyn apartment, and many of the tracks were recorded during 2013-2016 while he was living nomadically between Texas and NYC. As the 50-minute suite took shape, LoCrasto called upon Robin MacMillan of Faraway Sound studios, who played drums/percussion and engineered and mixed the album.
With ‘Lost Dispatch,’ LoCastro has crafted the perfect sand-and-salt-air soundtrack for warm weather journeying, no matter how close the crashing waves. It’s a sonic love letter to the electrified energy of swingin’ synthesizers, and a sunglasses-on, technicolor trip of third-eye tropicalia, dropping just in time for summer. Sunscreen not required.