Phantogram dazzles a sold-out Union Transfer crowd

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Phantogram | photo by Michelle Montgomery | michellemontgomeryphotography.com
Phantogram | photo by Michelle Montgomery | michellemontgomeryphotography.com

New York based electronica duo Phantogram rocked Union Transfer this weekend with an electrifying performance. On Sunday, the band played the second of two back-to-back sold-out shows in support of their second full-length album, Voices, which was released in February. Josh Carter (vocals, guitar, and electronic beats) and Sarah Barthel (vocals, keyboard, and guitar) were backed by a three-piece band, which allowed them to give a spectacular, full-sounding performance.

With a name inspired by an optical illusion, of course Phantogram incorporated a highly impressive light show into their rhythmic, ethereal sound. The entire show was coordinated with variations of strobe lights and colored laser lighting patterns. A visual highlight of the show was towards the end of their performance of “Bill Murray.” During the ballad, Barthel donned a full-length reflective robe and essentially became a human disco ball bouncing golden laser beams off her body as she rotated on stage. Barthel’s powerful, yet ethereal soprano voice combined with Carter’s vocals and his guitar-driven and electronic rhythmic beats created a wonderfully complex and layered sonic atmosphere. Phantogram’s performance was the least to say amazing. Next time they tour through Philly, I have no doubts they will play to another sold-out crowd.

Singer-songwriter Lia Ices opened up the show, and was backed by a guitarist (her brother Eliot) and a drummer. She performed an energetic and upbeat set consisting of songs off her recently released third LP, Ices. Her latest material is a departure from the piano-driven music of her previous albums, allowing for a more experimental and electro-inspired soundscape.

Check out photos from both sets in the gallery below.

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