Where I am, it’s winter in partial quarantine. White. Stark. Bleak. Feeling a bit barren on the inside these days. When I stumbled into a young band’s new single Feeble Man, it strangely seemed to hit the spot. Emerging from the Los Angeles music scene, Phaeic is a young alternative rock trio comprised of Kris Balocca (lead vocals, guitar), Elijah Wells (bass/sound engineering), and Josh Dobrowner (drums). Introspective, softly edgy, and with a delightful hint of melancholia in the distance, Phaeic’s sound is not unlike a Gen Z rendition of the Smashing Pumpkins.

Feeble Man is the kind of slow and stirring alt rock that gets under your skin when you aren’t looking, with the textured, dreamy reverb on the electric guitar and the emotional honesty of the lyrics, which explore the complex ethos of masculinity. The lead guitar melodies are inviting in their repetition and cadence. The bass work creates an ambient alt rock warmth and an anchoring of the lead guitar lines. Dobrowner’s work on the drum kit is simple but intuitive; there are soft expressions and subtle dynamics that help create a masterfully muted backdrop for Balocca’s stirring vocal delivery.

And it is. Balocca’s vocals are moody and introspective. Reflective of the song title, his voice emotes both a tender vulnerability at times and a faintly aggressive power at others. Maybe that is what stirs me out of bleakness. It’s breathy and gruff, soft and strong, inviting and confronting; all at the same time.

Feeble Man is the first single (released January 29, 2021) from Phaeic’s self-produced debut EP entitled “W/Out.” Glad to have been introduced.

About IMR

Independent Music Reviews is a music blog that contains album reviews, music news, new releases, just released singles and videos.  We attempt to review most of the albums on the site, and are always looking for your feedback on the albums we review.  Don’t let it be said that we are trying to be especially special, just honest and somewhat available.


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