AN INTIMATE PRESENCE
Cruel World – USA single release
The early press on vocalist Phoenix O’Neill would use words like “hypnotic” and “spellbinding,” drawing early comparisons to Amy Winehouse, Elle King, and Lana Del Ray, yet I would argue that Ms. O’Neill has invented her own category. Though we find her at the beginning of her odyssey, one simply cannot listen to her sample songs on SoundCloud without feeling enchanted. This talented performer possesses a bold, yet ultimately delicate vocal instrument that not only engages the listener, but beautifies the landscape of his or her emotions. Phoenix O’Neill is more than a singer. She is a mirror of the elegance in all of us.
While Ms. O’Neill has engineered an aesthetic methodology that would interpret for us the intricate workings of our own hearts and souls, the product is not manufactured solely through a conduit constructed of her own feelings and experience. There is more here than a singer expressing herself. As previously mentioned, Ms. O’Neill’s delivery is somehow globally representative, and this stems from a couple of critical platforms.
First, Phoenix O’Neill possesses an incredible gift on purely technical grounds, in the sense that her vocal travels seamlessly through more than just mood. In the same run, for example, she will often begin in the voice of a hopeful adolescent, and complete the brush stroke with the clever, intricate technique of a seasoned adult. Not only is this a marvel for the purpose of analysis, but the effect on the listener is absolutely visceral, felt right down in the fiber, as we harken back to the purity of youth while simultaneously connecting with her evolving world view.
The other interesting binary at play here would best be defined as a production issue, and that is how very close to your ear Ms. O’Neill seems when you listen to her music. Though most of her fans might be unfamiliar with the toggle switches and push-buttons needed to create this phenomenon, one can not deny that during a Phoenix O’Neill song, it seems she is sitting right next to you. Not only does this make her delivery more personalized, but it also gives the indication that she doesn’t need a lot of distancing tools that would create stylized yet impersonal narrators as opposed to this intimate interpreter who can tell us who we are, up close and personal.
Phoenix O’Neill recently came out with a song called “Cruel World,” which I would highly recommend for those who are not familiar with her prior material. The main vocal is mesmerizing, and the secondary echoes will haunt you like bittersweet memories. Another of my favorites is “Did You,” as here we have a crisp acoustic guitar accompaniment that gives Phoenix O’Neill the opportunity to deliver an exquisite vocal in terms of dynamics and texture upon a folk tapestry that gives accent to her depth and sensitivity.
Phoenix O’Neill is more than a diva.
She is the voice of our richest inner poetry.
View the video – Hear the song
For more about Phoenix Oneill visit her website.
Phoenix Oneill | Official Website