By Kathryn Helmore
Nashlyn Lloyd confidently struts into 49th Parallel Coffee House on Main Street in Vancouver wearing black pants, ballet flats and a blue business-casual blouse that accentuates her long, brunette mermaid locks.
The lead keyboardist and songwriter for the Vancouver-based dream rock band, Frankiie, Lloyd has just come from her full time job at the art grant organization, Creative BC. It’s a job she’s just as passionate about as her music but it’s the juxtaposition of her professional working life with her budding music career that has the young musician’s head spinning as she prepares herself for the release of her band’s fantastic debut LP, Forget Your Head.
“I have an existential crisis on the daily,” says Lloyd. “When you’re growing up and becoming an adult, there’s this systematic world you must fit into, but as an artist there’s also this passionate world calling you and sometimes I wonder — could I do 100 per cent passion or would I just end up starving?”
Frankiie is far from starving, at least success-wise. Since their first show at Vancouver’s Biltmore Cabaret six years ago, they have edged into the big leagues with international tours under their belt, a contract with Tiny Kingdom management and now a new album set for release this month on Paper Bag Records. The album, which fuses their signature reverb drenched post-punk with their folk background, marks a new chapter for the band.
“Fran (Carbonneau, co-vocalist/co-songwriter and guitarist) used to play with a 75-dollar electric guitar that somebody won at a bar mitzvah and gave to her but now she’s got a good guitar and actually invested in guitar pedals,” says Lloyd. “I’ve upgraded from a basic keyboard I stole from my little brother to a Prophet Six. Oh and Zoe (Fuhr, drummer) finally brought a drum kit.”
Frankiie’s got the contract, the gigs, the album and the new swag, but to swing over the details and cue the all too familiar success montage would be reductive. Working with Creative BC, Lloyd offers a different perspective on success.
“Over the past few years I’ve been separating my ability in music from my business success,” she says. “The longer you play music, the more you realize there’s a certain amount of luck going on. I’ve stopped seeing success and failure as business achievements and more so as my creative output and how closely can I express myself to what I feel is most honest about me.”
In other words, Frankiie is focusing on the sound and integrity of the record’s songwriting, not its material, whether that is platinum, gold or simply vinyl.
Frankiie perform Thursday, Sept. 19 at the Clubhouse (Vancouver)Frankiie