Photo: Melissa Lunar

Mabe Fratti interrogates thought with “Kravitz” and “Pantalla azul”, announces new album

Mexico City-based, Guatemalan experimental cellist Mabe Fratti has revealed plans for a new album called Sentir Que No Sabes (“feeling like you don’t know”), due on 28 June via Unheard of Hope. She has also shared two songs from the project, “Kravitz” and “Pantalla azul”.

Of “Kravitz”, she says: “It’s a song about the sensation of not knowing where the opinions come from and the chicken or egg question: do they come from outside? Do they come from inside? Also, who wants to listen to these opinions? Who actually listens to them?”

The track takes Fratti’s trademark plucks of her instrument to new levels, creating a crunchy basslien that wouldn’t be out of place on a stadium rocker. She ices it with her quizzical, searching voice and intermittent injections of brass that surprise and delight with their sudden squiggles. They sound like the thoughts dashing across her brain tempting her to reach out for explanation, tugging her onwards into the song’s subtly cavernous peak.

“Pantalla azul”, meaning “blue screen error”, meanwhile “was born out of me getting a Whammy and playing around with it”, according to Fratti. It finds her teaming up again with her partner and Titanic collaborator Héctor Tosta, who “pushed the track forward by creating the quantic jump towards the polyrhythmic section that transforms the song”.

About “Pantalla azul”, Fratti adds: “The lyrics make a reference to the ‘stop’ blue on the screen on VHS or the blue screen of a PC when it breaks. Also to an appreciation to what’s unknown and mysterious, and being at peace with the shadow and the complexity of things.”

Here, her instrument is much looser, creating waves of melody that bend and shiver as she ascends her thought process. Tosta’s natural ability to interweave with and augment her playing is on breathtaking display once again.

Listen to “Kravitz” below or find it on streamers, “Pantalla azul” is currently available on Bandcamp or via the Emanuel Juarez-directed video which is also below.

Mabe Fratti’s new album Sentir Que No Sabes is out on 28 June through Unheard of Hope (pre-order on Bandcamp). You can find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Live dates:

05/25 – Düsseldorf, DE – Approximation Festival
05/28 – Barcelona, ES – Primavera Sound 

07/05 – Roskilde, DK – Roskilde Festival

11/02 – Torino, IT – C2C Festival
11/07 – Paris, FR – Pitchfork Paris 
11/06 – London, UK – Pitchfork London