How can something so far away seem so close at the same time? We often long for something that’s right in front of our eyes, but remain focused on what lies in the distance. This idea, this emotion, is put into a musical format thanks to Matthew Houck of Phosphorescent. Personally I get this sense in a lot of his music, but nothing like the feeling I get from “The Mermaid Parade.” No matter what is going on in my life, this song hits me right in the feels and makes me think about what’s really important; music can’t be strange like that.
What originally struck me about Phosphorescent was their production style. Honestly it’s kind of a wash of sound and at times it’s difficult to pick out certain instruments - everything seems to melt together, but that’s what makes it great, and more importantly unique. As soon as one of these songs comes on you know Matthew Houck wrote it. He has managed to find his sound which has only accentuated in his more recent albums. It makes you want to get up and sing, it makes you want to sit back and listen, it makes you feel. This is a song you can listen to over and over again because it gets better and better each time, and you never seem to want it to end.
Like most music, lyrics play the crucial role of moving the narrative forward, but coupled with music that does the same is a recipe for a good tune. “The Mermaid Parade” tells a story about how he could fly back to NY and be there by the evening, but instead he stays behind and walks along the beach with naked women in the mermaid parade. This song continues on this fashion but the core remains the same. What happened in that moment? What makes us make these decisions? And who’s to say which one was right? Houck’s music is riddled with these complicated and often ironic situations, maybe his music can help a lost soul, someone like me, someone like you.
You can learn more about Phosphorescent here:
About the curator - Nick Malpezzi
Nick Malpezzi is a lover of nature, cats, beer, and music. When he’s not at his day job he is recording artists, working on films, writing music, taking pictures and enjoying life. He believes complexity is derived from simplicity, which is seen in his musical tastes and original productions.