New Album Review

Album Review: Coach Phillips – Never is Enough

BEST TRACKS: Tailspins, January in Seattle, Listerine

FCC violation: Conversation with Pietro (track 4)

Formed in 2017, Coach Phillips is a folky math rock band that got started in the DIY scene playing a series of low-key house shows in Seattle, WA. After picking up some support from college radio stations and the successful release of their EP Learning How to Swim in 2018, Coach Phillips started playing bigger shows and touring around the west coast, but they always stayed true to their Seattle roots and never lost their DIY ethics; Coach Phillips is signed with Den Tapes Records, an independent Seattle label dedicated to supporting local artists.

This LP is churning with gentle, down-to-earth melodies. Never is Enough features a crunchy acoustic guitar, a sparkly tambourine, sad harmonica solos, and warm vocals by Wade Phillips that are dreamily complemented by Jessica Kim’s harmonies. On the 7th and 9th tracks Tailspins and Delta, a forlorn violin makes an appearance, played skillfully by Kim to sound like it’s crying. While the variety of instruments might have perked my ears up a little bit, I feel that some more variation in the levels of intensity could have served this album well. After listening to this album for a while, I started to feel like I was listening to one long dreary song. However, the sliding riffs and tasteful baselines make this album still worth listening to.

Coach Phillips has a knack for digging up old feelings and memories of the past. The tambourine and harmonica on the 2nd track Chastity jeans will tug at your heartstrings making you nostalgic and wistful for the summer after high school. The 3rd track Lake Michigan Dream will summon melancholy to make you feel like someone just punched you hard straight in the middle of your chest. This album will be perfect to listen to on the rainy October days to come.

Recommended if you like American Football or Pinegrove.

-Safia Rizwan