Stagecoach review 'Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix': A Conversation We gave Stagecoah a challenge. They were made to analyse the latest album by Phoenix, Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and this is what went down! LB: Thoughts on title? TL: Love it. LB: It's pretty funny. TL: Arrogant? LB: It could be if the album didn't totally live up to it. TL: Ok here we go, track by track. LB: "Lisztomania". TL: What an opener. LB: You know straight away you're hearing something special. TL: I knew after 15 seconds this was my favourite album of the year. LB: Everyone's gonna know after 15 seconds that this record is kick ass. I knew and so did you. TL: I knew the way you know about a good melon. LB: Did you know Franz Liszt was a Hungarian composer and virtuoso pianist? I read that on Wikipedia. TL: I am starting to detect a theme of classical references emerging in "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix". LB: Track 2 is "1901". TL: Banger. LB: Killer combination of United-era Phoenix and the more rocking stuff off the last record. TL: That's actually a pretty good description of the whole album. LB: We can probably end our review here. TL: Yeah but I'm enjoying stating my opinions as if they're facts, so let's carry on. LB: You can hear the Cassius co-production, lush analogue synths held down by those Michael Jackson drums. TL: Are they samples? LB: Either that or they're so perfectly, perfectly recorded they sound like samples... LB: Next is "Fences". TL: Starts with a chorus, something I always enjoy. LB: It's a sweet chorus, this album is rammed with great choruses. TL: More synths, it's a real warm sound though, none of that 80s throwback stuff. LB: Yup. Most agreeable. TL: Something a bit Euro and Frenchy about this one. Not in a bad way though. LB: By this point i'm thinking Phoenix can do no wrong. TL: "Love Like A Sunset" is next. I think in a funny way this is the heart of the album. LB: They've recorded a guitar jam then sampled it and cut it up into a new track. TL: Then they've scattered bits of it all through the album. LB: Like crushed nuts. TL: Exactly like crushed nuts. LB: On a trifle. TL: Do you like the acoustic guitar that comes shining through at the end? LB: Yes. LB: "Lasso" is fifth track which many would consider a good place to hide some filler. TL: Would you say "Lasso" is filler? LB: No. Not at all. TL: But this review needs more criticism. LB: OK...It's filler. TL: Definitely filler. LB: Good we are now serious reviewers whose opinions people will take seriously. TL: The next track, "Rome", is one of my favourites. LB: I love the classic muted Phoenix guitars, in a way it's their signature sound. TL: I love the dancy upbeat pop combined with yearning, mournful vocal. LB: Also classic Phoenix. TL: This song is all the reasons we love Phoenix. LB: Franz Liszt spent his later years in Rome. It was a mournful time in his life. Maybe there's a connection. TL: Well, possibly. LB: Here comes "Countdown". TL: Big bruised heartfelt builder. LB: Woozy swooshing cymbal clashes and another gorgeous plaintive chorus. TL: I love this one. LB: This was the last one i got into but it turns out it's awesome. TL: Especially the last 60 seconds. Melts me every time. LB: Are we nearly done yet? My praise glands are wilting. TL: "Girlfriend". LB: Breezy uplifting pop, great sunshine music. TL: But still they slip in these exquisite moments of heart-felt wistfulness. LB: Yeah they've never nailed that so perfectly as on this album. TL: Here's that cut-up guitar riff again... LB: "Armistice", perhaps the darkest track on the album and my personal fave. TL: Another killer chorus. LB: Lovely stuff. TL: Is that a clavichord in the middle? LB: Could be. A sort of musical reference to Wolfgang Amadeus? TL: Shame it ends so suddenly. LB: Mate, tell me about it. I could get lost on the outro. TL: OK that's the lot. LB: Summarise please? TL: My favourite Phoenix record to date. LB: It should get them the recognition they've so badly deserved for years. TL: Every track sounds like a million dollars. LB: Francs. TL: Euros. LB: Freddos. TL: Cool. Luke Barham and Tom Lewis have been listening to the leaked download of "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix". They promise to buy the official release when it hits shelves on May 25th (They did). Links Phoenix: Stagecoach: MP3: Phoenix - 1901 1. Lisztomania 2. 1901 3. Fences 4. Love Like a Sunset Part I 5. Love Like a Sunset Part II 6. Lasso 7. Rome 8. Countdown 9. Girlfriend 10. Armistice Buy: Amazon