For us, what Submarine Bells and Soft Bomb so special is Phillipps' ability to synthesize his highly melodic and hook-filled songwriting with the sounds he wants from punk, post-punk, psychedelia, '60s garage rock, jangle pop, and baroque pop -- all accented by Phillipps' chiming guitars. Despite the disparate elements, the songs are cohesive and complement each other well on the album. Of course, these albums were good originally or they wouldn't have been reissued. But to our ears, they seem to have aged like a fine wine. When we learned they would be reissued we started listening to them again and found that we appreciate them now than before. The quality and variety is breathtaking, and our fresh listening leads us to appreciate details we might have missed originally. This is immaculate, timeless guitar pop and belongs in every collection.
Submarine Bells and Soft Bomb are available now via Fire Records.
Submarine Bells (1990)
Bandcamp for Submarine Bells
Soft Bomb (1992)
Bandcamp for Soft Bomb