Phi | Waves Over Vienna – Live at dasBach
Although Austria’s PHI first appeared on people’s radars and created quite a stir in the progressive/art rock scene with their last album “Now the Waves of Sound Remain”, these post-prog prodigies had already been active for years and years prior to that. The band now prove that fact impressively with their first live album: on “Waves over Vienna” the trio does not only present brilliant songs off of their current album but PHI also showcases gems from earlier releases.
Steeped in tradition Vienna club “dasBach” proved to be the perfect location to commence with the recording of this very special live album on 30 April 2015. This venue does not only provide the intense compact format of a sweaty club but also meets sound and technical requirements of the highest caliber perfectly. Thanks to the fact that the most loyal among the band’s fans gathered at “dasBach” to become a part of this documentation of the live prowess of PHI, who perform as a classic rock trio, the record has a warm feeling of familiarity about itself.
“For years, friends, fans and fellow musicians have been complimenting us, indicating that our live concerts develop their very own dynamic; something that goes well beyond just being the sum of the musical parts of our studio records. Consequently, whenever we prepare for a record, we always try to find new ways of capturing that certain ‘something.’ So, actually it was that form of constant self-searching that originated the idea of recording a live album,” says Markus Bratusa, singer and guitarist.
The fact that the record does not only come with a live CD but also a complementary DVD of the concert is due to the fresh, happy-go-lucky – and yet very motivated – approach of these young musicians. “We didn’t know what was going to become of all this. The plan was to simply play as many of our own favorite songs in a stress-free environment – and then handpick the best material.”
While one part of PHI is constantly reaching for the future, a different one is deeply rooted in the band’s foundations. Finally, on stage all the band’s influences merge and ultimately culminate in powerful songs and sounds. This creates a particular fusion of artistic agility, heavy grooves and Markus Bartusa’s uniquely sonorous voice. That mixture always provides for excitement and moments of surprise. “This is the first time that the band really sounds the way I had envisioned it as a child. In that respect one can say that I managed to fulfill one of my biggest dreams with this. And I also hope that we can incorporate a whole lot of these elements into the process of future studio productions. If an interested lover of music asked me about it, I’d say that, in terms of performance, sound and the ultimate song selection, ‘Waves over Vienna’ perfectly epitomizes the first phase of this band – almost like a best of-compilation,” says the singer.
The band’s label debut “Now the Waves of Sound Remain” which was released by Gentle Art of Music in the autumn of 2014 is the main focus of “Waves over Vienna”. In addition, however, the album also has songs off of two EPs as well as two albums in stall that the band’s members had both produced and released themselves – when they were merely teenagers. For contextual coherence all the thematic elements were intertwined and even partially rearranged. The hard work has paid off, because this live record now works as one massive unit – which may come as a surprise, considering the multitude of artistic innovation that is comprised on the album.
“‘Waves over Vienna’ feels like the exclamation mark to the end of the prologue of this band’s story, to me. The course for the future is set – and believe me, we still have a whole lot to say…”
||CD (incl. DVD)
||Gentle Art Of Music
2. Cashflow Prayer Answering Machine
3. Welcome Tomorrow
4. Tune In, Zone Out
5. Revolution By Design
6. Behind A Veil Of Snow
7. Manager Of The Year
9. A Clear View
12. Noew The Waves of Sound Remain
13. The Beginning Of The End