Review Round-up: Phantogram’s New “Nightlife” Racks Up Raves

November 3rd, 2011, 1:00 pm by Greg
Phantogram (photo by Sebastien Barre)

Phantogram (photo by Sebastien Barre)

Phantogram’s new “mini-album” “Nightlife” was officially unleashed by Barsuk Records on Tuesday, and the reviews are pouring in. The blogosphere is all a’buzz about the new music from Saratoga’s own Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter, so we thought we’d share a short round-up of excerpts from the recent round of reviews:

PITCHFORK: “…music refreshingly disinterested in pulling punches… Phantogram sounds more like a bonafide rock band and less like the flimsy pop act they could’ve dissolved into.”

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PLANET ILL: “Phantogram evokes a dark sexiness that few other bands can muster. ‘Nightlife’ is not always perfect, but it is always provocative and strangely beautiful. The pair makes you embrace that angst that you thought you left in high school and give it life with a shroud of heavy synth and breathy vocals.”

SLANT MAGAZINE: “‘Don’t Move’ is just that good, and it finds the band synthesizing all of their strengths into a four-minute electro masterpiece, teasing listeners with a clipping, jazzy sample throughout before resolving powerfully in a final, hip-gyrating chorus.”

THE OWL MAG: “I’ve never looked nor felt more awkward dancing in my chair than I did when Phantogram’s ‘Nightlife’ hit my ear drums… ‘Nightlife’ definitely comes from a darker place and brings a deeper sense of emotion to the table than its predecessor.”

SPIN MAGAZINE: “Lots of psych rock can be murky and meandering, just coasting along. But Phantogram drives straight through, with a clear purpose, no rest stops.”

PROJECT RHYTHM SEED: “‘Nightlife’ is an alluring collection of songs that hypnotize the listener in a sonic, rhythmic trip. The tracks are fresh, full of life and intrigue.”

CHUNKY GLASSES: “These beats are just waiting for the right opportunistic hip hopper to pick them up and make them into major chart-toppers. Seriously, when you hear Kanye or Lil Wayne spitting over the beat from ‘Don’t Move’ with Sarah Barthel’s ‘All you know how to do is shake, shake. Keep your body still,’ as the refrain, remember you read it on Chunky Glasses first.”

PASTE MAGAZINE: “…the type of danceable tracks Salvador Dali might craft if he traded his paintbrush for a drum machine and analog synthesizer.”