Talk:Phone Power

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Album or compilation? I've, personally, only seen the band refer to it as a compilation, so that would seem to suggest our categorization of it as an album is incorrect, but it seems identical in nature to Why and Glean, so that suggests maybe it is an album. After Album Raises Troubling Questions, what's the distinction anymore? — ACupOfCoffee (talk) 20:29, 5 February 2016 (EST)

I feel like I've *only* seen it referred to as an album... All will be revealed soon, hopefully. If it's the best of the remaining DAS tracks, then it's definitely in the album category, with an EP/full length of the leftovers deserving 'compilation' status, such as the companion compilations to Join Us and The Else...
Personally, I was advocating for Glean to be considered a compilation, but that battle seemed to have been already fought and lost by the time I wanted to throw my hat in the ring. I also thought Glean was the DAS compilation.... I feel like whatever we categorize Phone Power as, we should keep it consistent with Glean and Why, since Glean was released in its entirety on DAS, as was half of Why?, and probably so will Phone Power (maybe with those three unreleased tracks included for good measure). Next in Line (talk) 11:12, 20 February 2016 (EST)
I'm of the opinion that TMBG are the ones who decide what we should consider it. If they call it an album once it's actually released then we should, and if they call it a compilation then we should do that. --Self Called Nowhere (talk) 13:44, 21 February 2016 (EST)

If Glean is an album I guess Phone Power is. I remember many years ago, the UK band the Wedding Present did something a bit similar to the Giants, releasing a song a month as a single (and a cover as a B-side) on a 7 inch single format. They collected them together and it was called a compilation. However, I agree with SelfcalledNowhere, they can call it what they want. It doesn't really make much difference on way or another. (Mr Tuck)


Feel like I need to say here that they have dropped the ball quite spectacularly on this one. From the material they had available, including some of the strongest songs they've done in years, it was an open goal. Yet they've left off some great tracks, included some awful ones, sequenced it terribly, and thrown the whole thing away to the point where it barely even registers as an album release. Sigh... ~SirDarrell

I'm glad I'm not the only one. The sequencing here makes no sense, right?! - Masonstein

I think the sequencing and track choices are weird, too, and don't really work as an album. A compilation, maybe, but they could have easily done something way more solid. For example:

  1. I'll Be Haunting You
  2. Say Nice Things About Detroit
  3. ECNALUBMA
  4. I am Alone
  5. Sold My Mind to the Kremlin
  6. Apophenia
  7. I was Dancing in the Lesbian Bar
  8. It Said Something
  9. To a Forest
  10. Trouble Awful Devil Evil
  11. College Town
  12. Prepare
  13. Daylight
  14. I Love You for Psychological Reasons
  15. Another Weirdo

That's 15 songs (like Glean) ending with an instrumental (like Glean) and only a minute shorter than Glean. You could switch out or around some of the songs, but I think this would make much more sense as an "album". ~ april 20:11, 18 March 2016 (EDT)

While this album doesn't really seem very coherent and seems more like a compilation of songs, there is one idea that connects many, though not all, of the songs on this album. That would be change. Shape shifters seems to be a song about someone lamenting about how the world is changing, and I agree with the interpretation that it is from the perspective of a transphobic individual. Prepare is also obviously about change. What did I do to you seems to also lament a change, while Sold My Mind To The Kremlin laments the past. This doesn't work with all songs, but I think looking for more similarities between the songs could make the songs work better as an album.

It seemed to me the theme was psychology. Anxiety, paranoid delusions, hallucinations, self defeat, I Love You For Psychological Reasons. — ACupOfCoffee (talk) 22:27, 18 December 2016 (EST)

Best album since John Henry[edit | edit source]

Gotta say, this one hit me hard like how they used to. I feel that this is the best release since John Henry. I know I might be the only human that feels this way but with the subject matter in this album being so misanthropic, it is sorta comforting to know that I may be the only one. Maybe it is a personal thing, songs resonated with me at the time, I don't know. I feel that there is a general mood that connects the whole thing. I don't have a problem with the order of songs, and dang, there might be only a couple songs that fall into the 'sorta OK' category where everything else is fantastic. "Trouble Awful Devil Evil" is like slowly falling through an anechoic chamber of hopelessness. "It just said something" has the best hook that repeats into itself with both John's parts blending so nicely. Lyrically, it gives the sense of encountering something hugely life changing a la the monolith in 2001 Space Odyssey. Perhaps my favorite thing about this album is how stripped down it is and none of the songs feel like they have any commercial appeal. That helps to put this into the upper echelon with the older albums for me.