3. Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix by Phoenix
By: Anna Dobbie
|Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
2009 saw French four piece Phoenix release their beguiling fourth album, on which they outgrew their name-dropping association with Gallic collaborators Air and Daft Punk by forgoing label-pleasing razzle-dazzle and staying true to their musical ideals. "Lisztomania"'s chiming synths are reminiscent of vintage ELO passed through a gauze to filter out all the uncool bits, leaving us with a fuss-free single that's as cute as a shiny new button. "1901" sees them arrive with a crash into the modern world like Bill and Ted in a souped-up callbox to an invigoratingly catchy chorus of "Hey-ey-ey-ey-ey". "Love Like A Sunset Part I" is the rare exception to the indulgent instrumental album track rule, creating prickles of emotion that build to a creeping sense of unease, which breaks away with a genuine sense of relief to the calm sunset (Part II) after the storm. Wolfgang Amadeus, despite the boastful title, is a delightfully understated album which deserves to cement the band's reputation as one of the top European pop acts to watch.
Video: "Lisztomania" by Phoenix