Mon, 29 Jun 2015 11:41:00
Getting to understand the group's major label debut, dishing on Total Recall quotes, and so much more.
PHASES take pop music to a new plateau. The collective talents of vocalist Z Berg [The Like], Jason Boesel [Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes], Alex Greenwald [Phantom Planet], and Michael Runion instigate an intoxicating sonic alchemy befitting of their respective discographies. With an indie panache, the music remains as deep and diverse as it is catchy and charismatic. There's a lot going on musically, and that makes the tracks even more enjoyable and engaging. You'll be singing the likes of "I'm In Love With My Life" at full volume for a long time to come. PHASES give pop a good kick in the ass that it needed and emerge with a giant smile you'll want to share. In this exclusive interview, Z Berg chats us up about the group's upcoming album, Total Recall quotes, and so much more.
PHASES brings together so many different styles and elements, yielding really fun, yet intricate songs.
Thank you! That's a very flattering assessment.
What's the approach like?
Well, with this stuff, the whole sound of the record was a pretty big departure from anything any of us has really done before, first of all. A lot of it, as far as the sonic landscape of where it came from, Alex Greenwald co-produced the album and recorded much of it in his house. He sort of sequestered himself in his house for like and learned how to record music. He recorded on Garage Band and an outdated version at that. He just became this electronic recording wizard. That's where we started. We all write songs. We all have different influences as well, which I think is a big part of it. We each have a different favorite era of music. Those disparate influences and all of the perspectives as writers coming together really makes for something, at least, different, whether you like it or not [Laughs].
What are the crossroads for those eras?
For us, the point when it came together was when we started making music that we didn't think sounded like anything else. There are influences from the sixties, seventies, eighties, nineties, and now. Once we hit up on something that made us go, "I haven't heard that before," that's when we all came together like, "This is our vision. This is our world we want to create."
Was there a song that provided that moment?
There were a couple of moments! It's funny because the first two songs that did that won't be on the album, but they will be on the iTunes version. There was a song called "Paradise" that Mike [Runion] wrote and brought in. It was the first recording we did that sounded like this, and then "Go Forever" was the first thing where Alex wrote half of it and I wrote a section for it. We really didn't know what kind of music we wanted to make for a while. We were a bit directionless. A couple of songs happened and brought us all into the same mindspace where we were like, "This is f***ing it! Let's live here for a while and see what happens!"