Black, Frank : Honeycomb

“This is the best thing I’ve ever done. No really, it is”

Frank Black would have you believe that ‘Honeycomb’, notwithstanding his time singing about aliens and surfing with that band, is the apex of his musical career. The best news is that he’s probably right. Recorded in America’s honky-tonk heartland, Nashville, days before the Pixies set off on their money-spinning reunion tour, ‘Honeycomb’ sees Black collaborating with a handful of hickory-dipped legends (Spooner Oldham, Steve Cropper, Reggie Young) on elegantly-strummed slices of lo-fi Americana.

Of course, being as he is a particularly sickly, bloated root buried beneath rock’s great oak, his source material remains grounded in the weird: ‘Song of the Shrimp’, originally recorded for the Elvis film Girls, Girls, Girls is like a nursery-rhyme Finding Nemo. Still, for all its rootsy beauty, ‘Honeycomb’ will probably occupy the unenviable position of a footnote in the legacy of the man who was once Black Francis. Ignore the reunion cash-in circus, though: the real Frank Black is here.

Mike Sterry
8 / 10

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