After six years touring with Foster the People, Phil Danyew started Elephant Castle in late 2019. Unfortunately, 2020 was not the year anyone expected it to be. But Elephant Castle is back with their first release of 2021, “In Circles”.
The frenetic energy never rests. Surprising chord changes and timbre shifts explore the ordinary, yet complex struggle of accepting yourself. But the surprises aren’t limited to the harmony. Lines like “I’ve got nothing in the world,” start one way before finishing, “to prove to you.” Everything’s off-balance in the most perfect way.
With Phil Danyew’s soaring tenor vocals effortlessly floating over the hypnotic organ bouncing along, each new section sounds unique and yet so closely tied to the theme. The dizzying doesn’t stop—when Elephant Castle gets to the titular line, “I’m spinning in circles,” they keep changing which syllable gets emphasized.
As we spiral with the groove, the rapidly changing drum track grounds the complexity, giving us something to latch onto. So much swirls around this wonderfully dreamy track. It’s easy to pick out Phil Danyew’s ’50s and ’60s influences, but not so easy to find all the absolutely perfect musical moments Elephant Castle has crafted. It’s definitely worth keeping this one on repeat.
Stream “In Circles” below.
Ben is an advertising Madman who spends his days with words and music. When he’s not writing for his supper, he’s eating it at some of NYC’s most interesting restaurants.