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Strange Friend [VINYL]

4.7 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Vinyl (10 Jun. 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Chemikal Underground Records
  • ASIN: B00IU0GPB0
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 132,229 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. The Wind That Cried The World
  2. Clapshot
  3. Doom Patrol
  4. Atacama
  5. (Invisible) Friend
  6. Sweatbox
  7. No Shoes Blues
  8. Women Of Ghent
  9. Galapagos

Product description

Product Description

Musically Strange Friend is the most straight-up set of recordings the band have put to wax. Fans of their previous critically-acclaimed albums, fear not; those burbling, fluttering electronics that drag their sound through a wormhole and out into the 70’s alongside the soundtracks of John Carpenter and the kosmische of Kraftwerk and Neu! remain; the elements of folk; the woozy organ sounds. The difference is now it feels as though an imaginary thread’s been pulled tight through it all; take Strange Friend's driving opening track and first single, ‘The Wind That Cried The World'.

Singer Rick Redbeard on the song "The verses have a kind of nursery rhyme musical naivety and we wanted the choruses to just sort of blast in. The lyrics were kind of stream of consciousness that alludes somewhat to the inherent meaninglessness and randomness of artistic creation. The whole track acts as a nice opener and first single; a sort of a statement of intent after being away for so long."

Strange Friend, like their previous outings, is the sound of six clearly distinct personalities attempting to inflict their will on the rest of the group – it’s no surprise the phrase “love/hate” is brought up repeatedly by all its members in an attempt to describe their relationship with the band as an entity – but it’s that fission between each other’s contributions that provides the intangible individuality of their music. “Like all true utopias it can feel impossible to maintain,” admits guitarist Duncan Marquiss. “But we'd have fallen apart long ago if any one band member took the reins, and that friction between people throws up music that no single person in the band would have imagined otherwise. I still hope our utopia will turn into whisky fountains and flying sandwiches.” It’s something that you can’t help but feel would be fully deserved for these most strange but wonderful returning friends

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Scotland's serial pranksters The Phantom Band have been notable by their absence since 2010. Now they re-emerge fresh as a daisy and all spruced up for this 2014 release "Strange Friend". The band has helpfully tried to capture their music in the term `proto-robofolk'. This is a nice catch all bearing in mind that the expanse of their music ranges from shades of Frightened Rabbit to Pink Floyd, the Beatles to Can.

The brilliant opening track "The Wind that cries the world" encapsulates this point. It veers far and wide yet at heart is a great pop song. It slowly builds from a pounding start to huge choruses and then piles on the pressure. The background instrumentation is full of surging micro beats and synths making the song a delicious treat. As we travel through the rest of the album what is apparent is the participative democracy philosophy that underpins their music remains at the forefront. The styles contained within "Strange Friend" reveal different songwriters at work yet generally this is not a weakness. "Clapshot" is almost a piece of sixties surf pop but with a clear feel of modernity that makes it here and now. "Atacama" alternatively is a slice of haunting acoustic folk music with a lovely vocal by Rick Anthony. Then its back all vibrancy and bounce with "Sweatbox" which would not go amiss on a Yeasayer album. Indeed if you were forced to summarize this album in one word in would be "confident". The band are so sure footed they could walk a straight line when they are drunk. In plaintive but exquisite songs like "No shoes blues" you are reminded that in terms of invention they are probably the nearest heirs to the late great Beta Band recording music.

The last two tracks "Women of Ghent" and "Galapagos" are chalk and cheese.
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Format: Audio CD
Great third album by the Phantom Band, after a few years break.
They come storming back with their best set yet...all the earlier ingredients we loved are there, with an added maturity to Rick Anthony's voice and the colossal drums of new boy Iain Stewart(move over Bruford/Bonham/Moon).Over the 9 tracks the band showcase their versatility, and ,most importantly, their great talent of producing hook laden tunes .
This is a belter, make this band huge...tell your friends,better still send them a copy.
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By John Ault VINE VOICE on 2 Jun. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The Phantom Band produce another gripping set of songs. Rhythmic. Thought provoking. All wrapped in Ricks smoked honey voice. Try to catch them live if you can.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
A step up in technical quality for the band maybe too polished, a better balance of electronic and guitar, saw them live in October, awesome
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
love the phantom band.not their strongest work in my opinion but still a very good album.
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