Everything is everything for French indie-electronic superstars Phoenix. With barely enough time to brush the sandstorm from their shoulders after the first weekend of Coachella, the headlining band brought their stylish synthesis of rock and electronica to the intimate, less elementally-dictated room of the Red Bull Sound Space at KROQ.
While the reserved band emits the energy of refined adults in their persona, their new music has a punky, youthful quality that sees them growing up from the effervescent,youthful rhythms of their last album Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart into something with a little more “teenaged” edge.
They didn’t want the sequel to their last album which they dubbed “Ludwig Von Phoenix,” but something both unpredictable and fully-fleshed conceptually from the first song they wrote two years ago. Like those shiny halcyon days of increased awareness, lead single “Entertainment” is a glossy dance-pop anthem as fun as “Listztomania,” while “Trying To Be Cool” ebbed and flowed raucously showing off their garage rock roots.
Phoenix digitally teased their album Bankrupt! today with a free stream via iTunes. The album comes out April 23rd, but the tireless band–who texts with consistently-rumored Coachella special guests Daft Punk and had the brilliant foresight to bring the controversial R. Kelly onstage with them—seemed completely refreshed regardless of their hectic schedules.
Before playing the aforementioned songs from Bankrupt! and classics like “Listzomania” and “1901,” the band had a quick chat with Nicole Alvarez about their relationship with Daft Punk, their Coachella performance last weekend, and what exactly was going through their mind when they decided to bring “Trapped In The Closet” creator R. Kelly onstage with them.
“When we’re on tour, he’s part of our tour because we play a lot of R. Kelly in our dressing room,” admitted frontman Thomas Mars. “We just thought it would be great,” laughed guitarist Christian Mazzalai.
Everyone thought Phoenix would bring Daft Punk with them onstage like they did in 2006, but the band decided to surprise their fans and apparently don’t have any plans for special guests of any sort next weekend.
“If it’s predictable, it’s not the same,” said Mars. “We have to do it on our own with no help from anyone else.”
Which they need none of. Phoenix are massive festival headliners for a reason. Their talented, tight songwriting skills juxtaposed with their fresh, fun dance-centric tunes make them the perfect combination of professional polish and “Entertainment” that appeals to just about everyone.
–Nadia Noir, KROQ Los Angeles