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INTERVIEW: Phantom Phunk

1. How would you classify your music?

A: We try to keep our music from staying in the same genre for too long. We think that diversity makes for a better listen. There’s a couple definite rock tunes on the LP, but also a hip-hop song, some ballads, and even some psychedelic moments. Making music is our chance to explore different styles, and sentiments, and parts of ourselves even. So much that, we stopped trying to identify with a certain genre, so we made up our own genre instead to describe our music; we call it Graveyard Pop, which is the kind of music one supposedly listens to while out on romantic walks through the cemetery.

2. Who are some of your top 5 musical influences?

A: Our top five influences would have to be something like, of Montreal, the Gorillaz, Presidents of the United States of America, La Femme, and maybe Interpol?

3. What do you want fans to take from your music?

A: We want fans to feel like they are listening to pieces of themselves when they hear our songs. We want them to feel like they can be moody with our album; to ride along with the collection of sentiments that the album embodies, and to feel comfortable doing it.

4. Can you tell us a bit about your latest album? When will it be released and how does it differ from your previous work?

A: Our new album, Arboles Ossific, is the first chapter to our band’s journey. Considering it’s a debut album, it definitely possesses that startup feel; like the band’s formation and development can be heard between the tracks. But our perspective towards the LP mostly centers on the direction that it takes—as a first step—and the wonder of where it is leading. We don’t have much previous material together as a group to reference, so we keep our eye on where we are going next… which will probably be something that rocks a little heavier while keeping those exotic, explorative, cinematic and even quirky qualities that we established in Arboles Ossific.

5. What do you love and hate about the Music Business?

A: Thoughts on the music industry, huh? I guess what we like about it is chasing those opportunities where we can leave an impression on someone. You know, like playing a show, or connecting with people online. What we don’t like about it is the gulf that separates red carpet artists from the majority of musicians who struggle to make a career out of it.

6. What is the best concert you have been to? What do you like most about playing live?

A: Of Montreal puts on some “kick-ass” shows. The best part about playing live is the presence of the sound on stage which is something you usually don’t encounter in rehearsal or in the studio even.

7. Is there a song on this latest CD that stands out as your personal favorite, and why?

A: It is the unanimous opinion of this band that the most standout song on the album is “Tommy’s Cosmic Avocado”. It’s literally a journey when you listen to it—it’s so dynamic. It also is the one song that really came from the band as a whole. I mean we had come up with the riffs in our proto-stage, but it took the entire duration of our album’s production to finally complete the song. The song developed in parallel to the band, over the course of a year, year and a half, and the production is what it is because we approached it from four separate corners.

8. How have you evolved as an artist over the last few years? What made you decide to come back into the music business?

A: The biggest transformation in our band over the past couple years has actually been a change in our confidence. When we first started we were all kind of soft spoken musically speaking. After devoting that time to rehearsal and recording we all seem to have stronger attitudes towards ourselves and our capabilities.

9. If you could meet, play a gig, co-write a song, have dinner, get drunk with any band or artist (dead or alive) who would it be?

A: I would love to meet Beethoven because he had some really mean licks. I’d love to play a gig with Kevin Barnes, write a song with Annie Clark, have dinner with Roger Waters, and get drunk with Keith Richards.

10. So tell us what’s next?   

A: What’s next? We have some pretty ambitious projects lined up actually. We’ve already begun our second LP which will probably be done by the end of 2017. We are also hoping on creating our very own comic strip series soon to help with our online presence and band image. It would center around a band of hooded dinosaur skeletons who live underground and save the world continuously with their stellar rock n’ roll powers.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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