Phaeleh
The Cold In You


3.5
great

Review

by Deviant. STAFF
August 22nd, 2011 | 32 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: With The Cold In You Phaeleh continues to refine and enhance his craft with an EP full of drugged out bliss and wandering isolation

Listening to the music of Matt Preston's alter-ego Phaeleh is not entirely dissimilar to waking up and finding oneself trapped in a snow globe. At its core, everything is decidedly serene and simple; the edges however, are rough and jagged, toying in their confinement. He traps brief moments of frozen serenity like snowflakes in a jar, and then shakes them violently, capturing the resulting chaos from a distance. His music is the kind of jam we're all used to, but the showcase is unique in the same kind of way that sees us on edge every time deja vu sparks a fear of the unknown in us: we've somehow been here before, and yet it's all still a mystery. Like a hazy Sunday morning where our mind plays tricks on us and images tend to exist in the blurry corners of our vision that shouldn't rightfully be there. Phaeleh makes music for those sacred moments, where everything is as sharp as glass and hits us harder because of our somewhat more vulnerable states. He turns on us in the same way that a cold burst of air bites into us and chills through to the bone, he inhabits us with his music, and snaps us back to reality in the process. There are times when his music seems to almost not move at all, seemingly frozen in mid-air and just gently shimmering under its false light.

The Cold In You plays out in much the same fashion as his acclaimed sophomore effort Fallen Light. He crafts his dubstep as an almost empty skeleton, leaving whole sections void of form and beat, drawing out emotion from the empty space like a well. Coming from a background as a classically trained composer, Preston brings with him an assortment of odds and ends not commonly seen within the underground that he's fallen deep into; he eschews a similar design to that of Clubroot (an artist he constantly finds himself compared to), whereby his music exists free form somewhere between the depths of shaky London dubstep and the more divine and surreal nature of pure ambient. He constructs whole songs from a simple piano line, the keys delicately unfolding at a lovers pace. Dream-like yet full-bodied strings bend and buckle under his touch, gently undulating and caressing the loose rattle of the bass that he utilizes almost sparingly. He approaches his craft almost from a distance, casually observing as his sequenced percussion springs to life under a sky of violins and cradling keys, rather than bury himself deep within his own maze. As a result, the progression of his songs emerges slowly yet dutifully, all working under their own clockwork and to their own distinct rhythm. Nothing is too complex and discombobulated, the simple patterns act as a catalyst for the emotional out-pouring felt under just the briefest of keystrokes.

On 'Perilous' Phaeleh discards this approach however, instead throwing his all into a bass driven banger that shakes and convulses under its own paranoia. But it's when he keeps to his own unique brand of ice chilled dubstep (how a term like chillstep has managed to avoid bastardization at the hands of the blogosphere is beyond me) that he serves up the EP's highlights; it's the little segments embedded within 'Think About It' and 'In The Twilight' where he signifies his mark as an artist able to conjure magnificence out of thin air. It's in those bursts of genius where a tag like future garage begins to sound almost credible as Phaeleh playfully toys with 2-step by sending it off under a blanket of floating strings. Or when Soundmouse makes her welcome return in the title track and sketches out a poem over the clipped garage throwbacks; it's in these delicate moments where Phaeleh shows us that he's only getting better as an artist and one who deserves your eyes on him.



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user ratings (40)
3.8
excellent


Comments:Add a Comment 
Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


The Cold In You: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72_JQ_1NQFM
Think About It: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p-lYudKH_oQ&feature=related
In The Twilight: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYc_MBjxAL8

taylormemer
August 22nd 2011


4964 Comments


"Listening to the music of Matt Preston's alter-ego Phaeleh is not entirely dissimilar to waking up and finding oneself trapped in a snow globe."

Kids, this is why you shouldn't do drugs.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


It was a lovely experience however

clercqie
August 22nd 2011


6525 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Some chill tracks on here...



And god, 80 reviews? It's great as usual so have a pos good sir!

MO
August 22nd 2011


24042 Comments


Nice review man.

"on us and images tend exist" meant to have a "to" in there?

Acanthus
August 22nd 2011


9812 Comments


Gorgeous imagery sir!

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


"on us and images tend exist" meant to have a "to" in there?


Thank you buns


MO
August 22nd 2011


24042 Comments


np gasmask, pos'd

Tyrael
August 22nd 2011


21108 Comments


Dream-like

I could be wrong but to the best of my knowledge this is spelled as 'dreamlike'

It may just be me but your last sentence reads a little iffy... But I can't quite put my finger on what it is just yet. Apart from that, good review.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


To the best of my knowledge both are acceptable

Tyrael
August 22nd 2011


21108 Comments


Okay, my bad then :]

clercqie
August 22nd 2011


6525 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@ Ty: Blame it on Belgium's bad education ;]

Inveigh
August 22nd 2011


26879 Comments


this can't be as good as Fallen Light, but I'll still check it out

good review Deviant

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


It isn't, but not for lack of trying

Inveigh
August 22nd 2011


26879 Comments


the album art is really cool

Irving
Emeritus
August 22nd 2011


7496 Comments


Great review Dev. I've slowly started to listen to your brand of music after perusing your reviews...there's a decent chance I might actually get around to this sooner or later. Congrats on reaching 80 reviews; keep up the good work =)

NAAAAAAAAAAAAAASEVENYAAAAAAAAA

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
August 22nd 2011


32289 Comments


It's actually "Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba", but I'll forgive you your transgression ;)

Irving
Emeritus
August 22nd 2011


7496 Comments


^ a;sdkjf;f!!!!!

Deathcar
August 22nd 2011


1534 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review man, and new Phaeleh is definitely a good thing, will get my paws on this.

ITsHxCTOASTER
August 22nd 2011


2520 Comments


The ciiiiircle of liiiiiiiiife
I've been meaning to check out Phaeleh ever since I bookmarked your best of 2010 list Deviant, I assume I should start with Fallen Light?



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