Phosphorescent: “Song for Zula”
Hey, wasn’t the world supposed to end today? Well, we’re pleased as punch it didn’t, so we could give you at least one more Song of the Day.
Today’s song comes from Athens, Ga.-turned-Brooklynite group Phosphorescent. The “band” is really just one fella: songwriter Matthew Houck. He started making music in the year 2000 under the name Fillup Shack. In 2003, Houck released his first full-length under the Phosphorescent moniker A Hundred Times or More. That record, full of heartfelt, roomy folk with pop undercurrents, established Houck as a songwriter to be reckoned with. He’s been pretty consistent, releasing a new long-player about ever two years since (including–and this’ll is of particular interest for us Austinites–To Willie, Phosphorescent’s 2009 tribute to Willie Nelson).
In March, Houck will release Phosphorescent’s sixth record Muchacho. Pitchfork recently premiered the first single off the record, “Song for Zula,” but you don’t have to go that far because we have it for you right here. Houck’s wounded vocals, complete with a slight southern twang, an understated pedal steel and a few lyrical nods to the Man In Black keep Phosphorescent’s feet in folk-country land. But the gentle ballad is also filled with ornate, yet simple, orchestral swells and electronic touches. The combination makes for a touching pop tune.