Straight from Versailles, electronic rock outfit Phoenix have returned after a four year absence with the catchy and upbeat Bankrupt! Although the title could present a situation worthy of desperation or anger, the album itself is far from it. There are lyrics referring to being alone, but the tone of the songs themselves is one of pure happiness.
Although Phoenix have been a band for over a decade, it was only in their previous album that they were able to break from obscurity to allow their single “1901” to become one of the most played songs of 2009. Following this success, Bankrupt! is truly a mark of how Phoenix took a winning sound and used it to create a full album.
Phoenix are a powerful addition to the rising French music scene where other bands such as M83 have been capable of allowing a unique sound to arise that is exciting for both pop and indie lovers. The array of songs set out on the playlist of Bankrupt! range from radio friendly tunes such as “Trying to Be Cool” to the seven minute “Bankrupt” which sits in the middle of the album with an electronic/acoustic mash-up capable of both creating relaxation and wonder. “Entertainment” is probably one of the best openings for an album 2013 has seen with its exhilarating chorus and dance-like feel, while the rest of album carry songs like “Bourgeois” that are all filled with choruses fully capable of being chanted at any concert coming soon.
Structurally, the album doesn’t carry any emotional weight capable of instantly relating to the listener. Nevertheless, Phoenix have shown themselves in this album to be a band that have risen from their indie days to become leaders of pop rock with a unique sound that is sure to influence later bands to come.