August 1, 2009

Spotlight on Monolith: Phoenix

(Reprinted from

Phoenix is the quintessential sound of 2009’s Monolith. (That should be enough for you to decide whether you will like the band or not. However, if that’s not enough, the next 186 words should help – one way or another.) By “quintessential,” I mean that many of the bands in this year’s lineup consist of solid Indie Rock acts from around the world, which incorporate synthesizers or keyboards to give their music an extra Poppy oomph. Like Passion Pit or Harlem Shakes, Phoenix relies on a complex, but light sound.

Phoenix began in the late '90s in Versailles, France, with Thomas Mars (vocals), Deck D’Arcy (bass), Laurent Brancowitz (guitar), and Christian Mazzalai (guitar). The members wanted to play a form of music that encapsulated the popular genres at the time: Grunge and Electronic, but with a heavy Pop influence. After touring and reaching mainstream success, the band took a break and returned with their newest album, Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. Standout tracks include “Lisztomania” and “1901,” fantastic songs that are so infectious, you’ll start to itch below.
If you’re eager to revisit some of their older stuff, try a couple songs from their 2006 album, United: the mellow, “If I Ever Feel Better” or “Funky Squaredance,” a song so random, it’ll take you a few listens to ease into it.

LIVE: September 13 / Monolith Festival

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