Review Summary: If we are willing to avoid craving a rehash of the gems of the past, The Black Angles truly shine
Phosphene Dream is a very welcoming album to any psychedelic or oldies rock lover. The guitar, bass and drums work well together to form very bluesy hooks and catchy grooves that tend to rely heavily on the distorted vocals crooned throughout the entire album. This isn't a bad thing, as it gives an identity to what The Black Angles are doing. Within the first few repetitious beats the listener is plunged back into a classic era of mind alterations.
After listening to only the first few tracks one will immediately know exactly where to catalogue their sound with other artists: namely amongst earlier 70s psychedelic bands. Quirky and ethereal sound effects have Phosphene Dream hopping on the hippie band wagon; it’s hard to deny that this is what will be attracting fans as it’s easy to enjoy music based around the world’s most interesting psychoactive substances. However there is a fatal flaw in this gimmick. Today’s aforementioned hippie scene exists on a whole different level then it seemed to before. Whereas the peak of the psychedelic movement pushed for blissfulness and spirituality, it now acts as more of a fad. The influences of the 60s are there, but much more hollow. With Phosphene Dream one will be greeted with trance like beats and trippy instrumentation but will be left lacking the love and sincerity of some of the more famous oldies. Despite its lost effort in bringing back what rooted the 60s counterculture, Phosphene Dream is an overall enjoyable listen. If we are willing to avoid craving a rehash of the gems of the past, The Black Angles truly shine over the masses with their retro sounds and contemporary hooks.