Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Coach Phillips' effervescently sad "Listerine" is cool but way too brief

Listerine by Coach Phillips will surely make you smile, at least it did me, and seconds later, that smile grew into an all-out wide-eyed grin. And then, sadly, the song ended. It is (as they say) short and sweet but at a mere 1.5 minutes it could of easily have been twice as long. As a music reviewer, it is the ultimate truth that some of the best songs are too short and the not so good songs two times too long. 

My first impression of Listerine made me think of the Eels a bit, Cracker a bit, a wee bit of the Pixies and a wee bit of Elliot Smith too. Maybe not in sound but in temperament and emotional weight. The short Listerine from their first full-length album "Never Is Enough" has a big wallop of cool but feels very sad too. I have heard super good things about this band who hail from Seattle (WA) but this is my first introduction so I am looking forward to hearing the album. It drops June 5th via Seattle's Independent Label Den Tapes.  

Robb Donker


Never Is Enough is the first full-length effort from Coach Phillips. The album was co-produced by the band and audio engineer Jordan Cunningham at Sage Arts in Arlington, WA. The album largely explores the backlog of songwriter Wade Phillips, with many tracks having been demoed as early as 2014. The songs have since been infused with the energy of vocalist/percussionist Jessica Kim, and have passed through the theory lens of classically-trained saxophonist & Coach Phillips-drummer Chet Baughman. The album also features Tom Moskal on bass, Joe Oakes on guitar/wurlitzer (both also members of La Fille), as well as Austin-based guitarist Sabee Grewal of on tracks 5, 7, and 9. 

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