Rhyme Report

Published on August 4th, 2018 | by Jameelah "Just Jay" Wilkerson


Stream Water Slice’s Debut EP at PopDust; Los Angeles EP Release Show August 7 at The Hi Hat

Los Angeles-based musican Water Slice’s new self-titled EP will be released next Friday. The EP which features acclaimed singles “Write Back,” “Please Remember,” “This Way” and more is available to pre-order at Bandcamp. In anticipation of the upcoming release, PopDust is streaming the EP in full. Water Slice’s Patrick Phillips told Popdust, “A lot of this EP involved purging things from my past and moving forward. There was one relationship in particular that kept haunting me, and I thought I had fully exorcised out the bad feelings around its loss, but it all could be unleashed instantaneously with any sort of reminder: a place, a mutual friend, an Instagram post, etc. But what really put me over the edge was a totally innocent e-mail from this ex and the conflicted feelings about writing back. It definitely sucks to be an emotional puddle over a soon-to-be outdated mode of communication, but I’m sure other people have been there too. This is my ode to that feeling – maybe one day I’ll send a reply!” Water Slice will be playing a hometown record release show on August 7 at the Hi Hat in Los Angeles.

Trading in the overcast gloom of his Oregon home for the vast, sunlit backdrop of Los Angeles, Patrick Phillips, known as Water Slice, is gazing upon fresh beginnings.

When Phillips’ comfortable Portland life began to mirror an unending Portlandia sketch —working at a hip gastropub, playing packed local gigs, and djing niche African music— he decided to leave his comfy Portland lifestyle to pursue music in Los Angeles. In 2014, he moved into an idyllic artist house in the hills of Echo Park. On the rooftop, overlooking the city’s surreal landscape in the shade of a giant rubber tree, Phillips would contemplate life and write songs. This tranquil and mildly trippy atmosphere helped him establish what would eventually become his signature sunbaked resonance. During his first month in town, Phillips met Joaquin Pastor of James Supercave, and found himself playing bass in the dancy, psych-pop outfit for the next two years.

When Phillips departed from James Supercave he had time to process the past he left behind in Portland and dive back into his record collection of power-pop, post-punk, and world-psychedelia. This was the defining spark that led Phillips to pen his own material—a distinctive distillate of his own voice and sonic tone that he called Water Slice. Phillips spent honing his craft and writing new songs that were deeply drawn upon his own personal experiences. Under the spell of a previous romantic relationship that had dissolved, friendships that fell by the wayside, and the constant confusion of hanging onto life’s hollow past, Phillips’ latest batch of songs carry a tremendous amount of emotional heft—something that he initially didn’t set out to do.

This spring, Water Slice released, “This Way”, the first official single to his forthcoming self-titled debut EP. The song premiered on Ones To Watch, and Phillips opened up about the process of making the song by noting that, “Many of my favorite tunes, whether post-punk, power-pop, or reggae, are stories of suffering, while staying undeniably groovy. I love this contrast of heavy lyrics with otherwise sunny music, and I kept this tradition in mind when writing ‘This Way.’ At the time I was stuck deep in a rut, ‘This Way’ is about accepting my flaws and pushing into the future with the people I love.”

Water Slice recorded majority of the forthcoming EP with Chris Lynch and Adam Rasmussen of Gardens & Villa at their self-constructed recording studio located in Frogtown, which is immediately adjacent to the LA River. The only song not produced by Chris and Adam was “Please Remember.” That track was recorded and produced by Gus Seyffert, who’s played bass with artists such as Roger Waters, Beck, and The Black Keys and has recorded the likes of Dr. Dog and James Supercave.

Performing inside the aural vicinity of power-pop and indie-psychedelic rock, those who listen to Water Slice’s new songs can expect to become connected with the struggles, sorrows, and reflective nuances found in Phillip’s songwriting. At the same token, Water Slice’s music is greatly accessible, remarkably groovy, and elicits a happier time and place for its listeners to travel back to. Songs like “Please Remember” touch upon the notion of one’s current state and putting yourself under the microscope. It’s embracing your flaws and learning not to freak out about where your life is headed. Looking closer at “This Way”, it examines how if one’s past life is creeping up on them, then change lanes and head in a different direction. If one thing is clear, the record encapsulates the belief that life is constantly shifting and only the beholder can control their own trajectory from completely going off the rails.

Water Slice EP Track List
1. This Way
2. Write Back
3. Jack Parsons
4. Please Remember
5. Culpability
6. T Walton

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