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Sunday, April 23, 2006

Phantom Buffalo

Phantom Buffalo is a five piece out of Portland, Maine who has been knocking the socks of the British media. Their full length, Shishimumu, which was recorded some four years ago (but only released in England last year), has been called an aural orgasm by the BBC Collective (who also gave it 4/5), received a positive write-up in NoWax, loved by Said the Gramaphone (ok so he's Scottish, but he came across the album while in London), and was Mojo Magazine's "42nd best record of 2005." Their UK label mates include Belle & Sebastian, the Strokes, and Arcade Fire. Of course none of that guarantees that they are good, but at least one would expect to have heard of them, especially around northern New England. Have you heard of them? Chances are no. It's a disgrace to the USA. Originally conceived as The Ponys (the lesser known version), this group of art students make beautiful countrified psych-pop that's filled with strange and gorgeous detail and layers, but produced to sound incredibly simple. It's a bit reminiscent of The Shins and The Byrd's, but less straightforward and predictable. That's what I like about it best, whether the tracks get a bit folky, alt-jangly guitar-popish, or country, it's all a bit off-kilter and plenty interesting.

Luckily, Phantom Buffalo have already finished their second full-length, entitled The Unfortunate Phantom Buffalo Take to the Trees. If all goes as planned, it'll be picked up by a decent lable in short order and be made available in the fall. Between the new album and their scheduled cross-country trek across the country during the summer months, I feel that they're about to receive the buzz that's more then past due.

Photo courtesy of Somira Sao

Phantom Buffalo at MySpace

Video from their New Years 2006 performance at SPACE, Portland, ME

Dozen songs and interviews from an on-air performance earlier this year for WMPG's Local Motives program (thanks to The Air Strange)

Killing's Not Ok EP (2005)
Phantom Buffalo - Killing's Not Ok.mp3
Phantom Buffalo -
What Makes it Go.wma

ShiShiMuMu LP (2002)
Phantom Buffalo - A Hilly Town.wma
Phantom Buffalo - Distracting Salamander.wma
Phantom Buffalo - Cheer Up My Man.wma

1 Comments:

  • At 12:57 AM, Anonymous mags said…

    dude, i like them a lot. so cool to just sit to.

     

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