Chase Atlantic Stuns with their New Record, 'PHASES'
Chase Atlantic has just released their second full length album, PHASES. The album focuses on similarly realistic themes to their EP, DON’T TRY THIS, that was released earlier this year. The album as a whole is very cinematic and theatrical; something I find really refreshing for music now as music, especially pop, has become so formulaic that having cinematic and lyrically heavy music is needed in the music industry. Chase Atlantic’s PHASES really nailed that blend of genres.
An interlude type song that starts the album off with very relaxing music with radio bits of a countdown (like the type you’d hear on rocket ships or a plane). It’s relaxing and sets up the tone for the rest of the album really really well.
This is the first real song on the album and it is the perfect opener. It’s reminiscent of 80s electro-pop with drum fills and saxophones. As well as it’s 80s sound, the song sets up what I like to call “late night drive music”. It’s music that has a warm, friendly tone that you listen to while driving on an empty highway at night with your friends. It’s a good song, and a perfect opener.
Continuing with the late night drive music, PHASES brings back the words from the INTRO. It’s easy to tell why this is the title song as it’s message is about how life is changing with lyrics like, “I feel like I’m going insane, going through phases”. so without further ado, check my track-by-track review below!
LOVE IS (NOT) EASY:
This has a different sound that is not as relaxed as the previous songs on the album. Despite that, it still draws clear inspiration from the 80s electronic pop (the saxophone is back!) like the other 2, but with more of a ballad feeling. I found that this song pulls so much from real life. With lyrics like, “the type of friends who fuck but when they fall in love they’re too afraid to talk”, its early an emotional song.
This is the lead single on the album, but despite that it’s one of my least favourite songs on the album. I enjoy the beat as it still stays to true to the rest of the album, but the story of the messy romance isn’t anywhere near as good as the others on the album.
The saxophone is back and better than ever. This is one of my favourite songs as it’s so lyrically developed with a really amazing message about the presence of social media in young adults lives. My favourite lyric on the album is in this song, “There’s no rainbows, just bylines” which is a sad, but true, reality about life today. And while it’s a modern message with modern beats, there’s still the old school saxophone reminiscent of the 80s. It’s just the right amount of blending that not many bands can nail.
HEAVEN AND BACK:
This is also one of my favourites on the album. It has such a catchy chorus that would make anyone want to sing along, and the drum beat throughout the song is catchy. Plus, I love the fact that Chase Atlantic isn’t shying away from darker and more serious themes like drug addiction, Also the saxophone is back with another amazing solo, it’s like I went to the 80s and back and I’m here for it.
This is a slightly forgettable song compared to some of the others on the album. It has a good beat, it’s easy to sing along to, and it’s catchy, but other than that, it doesn’t really compare as much to the other songs on the album.
EVEN THOUGH I’M DEPRESSED:
one of the ballads of the album, this song is a really well written song about mental illness. i like the complicated message about mental illness, “my life is a mess, i kinda like it even though i’m depressed” and “even though i’m depressed, i’m not sorry”. it’s a very empowering song.
this song is more hip-hop/r&b and less indie than the others on the album, but the static that’s been present in the other songs is carried through here, so it does still fit into the album. and the theme of a messed up and messy relationship goes with, and flashes back, to other songs on the album like her.
I NEVER EXISTED:
this song is more alternative rock than the others, a little bit more 1975-ish than the others on the album. the instrumentals are very 80s electronic-pop, but sadly i think the lyrics and vocals are lost to the background music in this song so it doesn’t stand out as much as other songs on the album.
I DON’T LIKE DARKNESS:
the final track on the record carries through the themes of relationships and mental illness prevalent throughout the album to the end. i also think this is the perfect song to end with because it brings back the driving with friends vibes, but because of the lyrical imagery of night, it feels like you’re ending your nighttime drive and heading home. a wonderful image to end on.
PHASES is an album with themes applicable to almost every teen and young adult’s life. And it’s something everyone under the age of 30 should listen to as it is such a current and realistic look at life. Mitchel Cave (lead vocals) said that they’ve “been able to fuse genres and aesthetics together to create a defined nocturnal bliss of our own.” And as far as I’m concerned, they’ve nailed the “nocturnal bliss” perfectly.
you can Listen to PHASES here.