Cosmo Jarvis - Think Bigger (25th Frame)

Virtuoso Cosmo Jarvis has dabbled in nigh every genre and tried his hand at most media - his critically lauded film 'The Naughty Room' gets its television debut on BBC4 later this month. The Devonshire local is adept at conjuring up scores of down-to earth, genuinely heart-warming tracks. His debut album Humasyouhitch/Sonofabitch was a double, armed with comic gems and long-ponderers about the inane, the unexplored and the charming. His second effort, Is The World Strange, Or Am I Strange? featured 'Gay Pirates', the viral hit admired by Kylie Minogue and Stephen Fry. It would appear that Cosmo's third LP has some big shoes to fill.

Released Jul 17th, 2012 / By Larry Day
Cosmo Jarvis - Think Bigger (25th Frame) 'Love This' skulks into focus, a folksy acoustic number with a devastating chorus. Twirly electric guitar squawkings blur the line between folk and rock, but that's just the way Cosmo has always written songs - he's not shackled by the conventions of genre. 'Train Downtown' enters with a pop-rock guitar riff and a sunny disposition, before slithering into an alt-country chorus which wouldn't sound amiss from the tongue of Steven Tyler. The cut ends with the addition of dark, orchestral strings and a very á la mode saxophone solo, before dissolving into 'Tell Me Who To Be' - a soulful chunk of baroque pop and harpsichords.

There's a real sense that Cosmo has found his serious footing. His previous records were always strong, although somewhat scattered, featuring copious amounts of genre-hopping and flippant silliness - but that was Cosmo, and that was his true voice. Think Bigger is him settling into a niche. It's by no means weak, and there are some tracks which could be considered the finest of his career, but it's lost the joie de vivre that we came to love so much in past hits like 'Mel's Song' and 'Gay Pirates'.

'Sunshine' is enormous. If at all possible, it could be described as acoustic-metal. The chorus is heavy, “I'm so sick of the sunshine baby, cause it burns my skin,” is a guttural growl whilst a lone banjo jerks behind distorted guitar. It's ballsy and showcases Cosmo's talent at thrashing and making pure noise. 'Hopeless Bay' is a complete U-turn on 'Sunshine'- it's light, melodically fantastic and with powerful lyrics. While both tracks are drastically different, they still stand out as important efforts and highlights on Think Bigger.

Cosmo has markedly made a shift over the course of his music, first writing from an autobiographical standpoint and moving on, especially on the third album, to leaning on imaginary characters and scenarios. He's telling stories, the way he always has. Think Bigger is a well-rounded album, and it may well be less humour-based, but maturation is natural in artists. We've seen him flourish during his string of records, and at the ripe old age of 22, Cosmo Jarvis has his sights set on the vital aspects of growing up, and he aims to explore the finer points of living.