By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
Maybe there's something in the water out in Fort Worth? Tough to say, but the Fort sure seems to be cranking out more than its share of indie dance-pop outfits in the past couple of years. First Black Tie Dynasty and The Burning Hotels garnered national attention. And now their possible heir apparent hopes to strike the same chord with fans.
And it should: Phantom Caste's debut EP, Hands to the Light, is chock full of the same brand of swagger and syncopation that made those other acts such popular fixtures in the region.
Opener "The Silent Tide" sets the tone for the rest of the EP and is filled with reverb, synths and energy. But Phantom Caste can also do moody: "Choke" nearly sounds like an Interpol cover with its dark, masochistic lyrics and all. Credit frontman Paul Cooksey for that much; his voice is front and center throughout this release, powerful and fragile all at the same time, while displaying fairly impressive control when reaching those higher registers.
The songs on this debut EP are catchy and listeners will find that their reactions to this crop will run the gamut from addiction to love. In short: This is a very promising start for a band that's fairly new to the scene. More, please.