Thursday, June 16, 2005


I once described listening to bands like Phosphorescent as akin to watching a ball of string unravel. That may sound as exciting as watching paint dry but don't take me so literally when I'm trying to be metaphoric. Imagine the string to be made of a rainbow of colors and a bunch of weird textures if you must. There are other bands that I tried to apply this metaphor to, bands like Radar Brother, the fabulous Slow Dazzle and The Tears And Prayers of Arthur Digby Sellers. These are bands that wrap their songs in languid beginnings that slowly gather momentum building towards perfect little crescendoes, delicate sometimes, clumsy and large at others, but always intoxicating. Bands that do this well always surprise me with a horn or steel guitar at the song's peak, a rattle of glass bottles or a strange keyboard that sounds as if it was salvaged from a swamp. Song structure in a standard sense may be tossed aside in the interest of peeling apart a musical idea and putting it back together again. But you can see my problem with the metaphor. It's not really about unravelling, it's more about building up. Perhaps a metaphoric snowball growing in size is more appropriate. My point here, and there is a point, is that Phosphorescent (another product of the Misra Records fountain of good music) plys this territory and plys it really well. So well in fact that I've been struggling with aptly describing their sound. I want to say Palace Music crossed with Luna? Acoustic Neil Young and Sonic Youth? Songs:Ohia and My Morning Jacket? Fuck, I just don't know. I do know that there's something wonderful about this record, though it took awhile to grow on me. I'll spare you the biographical details (the Misra site has that and the links to purchase) and simply suggest that you follow the string as it unravels or the snowball as it gathers momentum or the comparisons as they pile up.

The Album is Aw Come Aw Wry. Here are some songs:

Joe Tex, These Taming Blues

Dead Heart


Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey man, i appreciate the enthusiasm, phosphorescent (matthew) and the touring band are downstairs right now sleeping, and they are amazing. they played toronto tonight (my home town) and they were breathtaking, i love your taste.


3:36 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home