Phantogram: “Voices”




[Republic, 2014]

by Jeanne Gallagher


Phantogram’s hazy, ephemeral sound that made them an overnight success with the release of their first album, Eyelid Moves, in 2009 continues fluidly into their newest release, Voices. The electro-pop duo again relies heavily on vocals to counter the simple beats of their synthesized songs. Longtime fans of the duo won’t be disappointed, but they won’t necessarily be blown away, either. The album is heavily atmospheric – the kind of music that won’t necessarily grab your attention, but you’ll keep it on for hours on end in the middle of the night before realizing you’ve been listening for so long. The album is good – it’s well produced, the vocals are incredible, duets unsurpassed, but it’s dreary, maybe even monotonous. Yet, that’s not such a bad thing. Voices is the kind of album that hypnotizes, entrances and perfectly captures a certain energy core to Phantogram. “Black Out Days” and “Never Going Home” stand out among other tracks, but the album as a whole isn’t anything too different. It’s safe: not unacceptable but surely not an exciting, either. Voices is a good album, particularly for those late nights left to one’s own thoughts.