Phlox – Quiver

Quiver Cover Art

Nice mellow psych-alt-prog!

Let me clarify something before we get confused, the band I am reviewing right now is Phlox, from Malaysia, please do not confuse with the Estonian avant-jazz band with the same name.
Well, so let’s start. “Quiver” is the name of the first full-length album of this young band, who had previously released a five-track EP back in 2009; in this occasion, they reunited ten compositions in which we can listen to their influences and style. This four-member band is trying to reach more listeners, so if you can go to their bandcamp site and help them, they would really appreciate.

So this 2011 release begins with “Quiver (part 1)”, which has a soft guitar in the few seconds, which later will be accompanied by drums and atmospheric keyboards. A minute later the atmosphere becomes tenser, with some kind of drama on it, we can appreciate it when the intensity increases. Later it slows down and finishes as it began. The second track is entitled “Speak to me”, here we can listen to a more aggressive sound created by guitars, which at the same time, and helped by the other instruments create a kind of soft psychedelic sound. In this track the vocals (in English) appear for the first time.

“High & Low” reminded me a bit of Gong due to the quirky voices and to the spacey and psychedelic sound in the beginning. Later it slows down a little bit with those mellow vocals, but only for a few seconds because it changes again to that increased intensity where the psych tones reappear. The track intercalates moods, the calm and the intense ones. “Morning Dreams” is a shorter piece with acoustic guitar and background keyboards, that create a nice and joyful sound.

It leads to “Quiver (part 2)” which happens to be the longest composition with almost eight minutes length. It softly starts and little by little progresses while the seconds pass, we can appreciate how it begins with a calm, barely listenable sound, and later becomes more intense. However this is a laid-back track, with charming vocals and delicate drums. The guitar work (both, acoustic and electric” is really good, nothing complex but always accurate. Though it is a long song, it does not really have notable changes, the sound and rhythm is the same during almost all the time.

“Everything Kills You” is another shorty with acoustic guitar and that joyful sound of the previous short track. “Where You Go” is one of those tracks with a sound closer to alternative or indie rock, this also reminds me of their EP, with this mellow, relaxed and friendly sound. This is a truly enjoyable song, though it is far from the progressive rock realm, but, who cares?

“Inside, Outside” retakes the spacey, atmospheric and soft psychedelic sound they previously shared. For the first three minutes the structure does not really changes, however in the last two it becomes more interesting, with some guitar riffs and a more intense sound. I dare say this is one of their finest moments, though I don’t like how it all of a sudden ends with the drums, I would have preferred a fade out.

“Bring me there” is the third and final short track with acoustic guitar, keyboards and joyful sound. And it leads to the final song of the album which is entitled “Quiver (part 3)”. It is actually my favorite of the quivers, due to its dramatic, yet emotional sound. I love how It is progressing, creating a wonderful psychedelic, spacey and atmospheric feast. Very good decision to finish the album with this track.

Phlox are an interesting and promising band, I am sure we will listen of them in the near future, meanwhile, spread the word and get their music.

Enjoy it!


1. Quiver (part 1)
2. Speak to me
3. High & Low
4. Morning Dreams
5. Quiver (part 2)
6. Everything Kills You
7. Where You Go
8. Inside, Outside
9. Bring me there
10. Quiver (part 3)


* Hakim Tahar – vocals, keyboards, guitar
* Hanafi Rahman – electric guitar
* Syazwan Sazali – bass
* Ahmad Zulikhwan – drums, percussion

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