PHANTASIA "Demo 2019" (Artifact)

This tape came across as a total mystery to me, aside from song titles and production credits this tape has no other information attached to it. Luckily the internet was able to shed a little light on this one for me. Phantasia is a five-piece sort of gothy, sort of punky, very rockin’ band from New York, NY that has been kicking around since (seemingly) the summer of 2019.

Phantasia is driven by some great punchy drums and basslines that will definitely make you want to dance. Sharp guitars stab while dreamy synths wash over everything else. Topped with vocals delivered in an almost monotone that bring to mind dazed Debbie Harry, and I promise that is not at all a diss.

The pounding rhythm section keeps me coming back for more of this, everything else is just icing on the cake. In a short 17 minutes Phantasia offers 7 songs that seem to each build off of and compliment each other in a way that many demos just don’t do. This does not come off as a demonstration but more of a fully formed band, sound and concept.

“Rotten”, the longest song on the tape at 4.5 minutes shows off the guitars quite a bit more and offers a nice change of pace. “I Broke A Promise” follows it with a quick punchy number that has been my favorite of the batch since my first listen. I would not hesitate to recommend this to any fans of first wave punk, early new wave or even no wave for that matter. Highly infectious rock n roll.

--Righteous James