Phantoms ' 'Pulling Me In' Is Great Music About Bad Decisions: Exclusive

Caleb Donato


We've all been there, that moment when you have to choose: do I stick by my guns, keep my self-respect, and sleep alone? Or do I swallow my pride, ignore my friends heeds, and go along for the night with that ex-lover who is always bad news but also totally sexual?

“It's that person that you continue to take back and give chances to, and they just continue to do the wrong thing, but you're still down for it, so whatever,” says Phantoms' Vinnie Pergola. “It's definitely happened to both of us a few times, so it was fun to write.”

The LA-based duo's anti-love song “Pulling Me In” explores that sticky, sensual, very bad decision. It's a soundtrack to those moments when you think “I don't care if this body is bad for me, I've just got to have it. I'm an adult, I can take it. To hell with the regret I'm gonna feel in a week.” It's a funky synth groove and irresistible beat that begs you to do the wrong thing.

“We definitely wanted to put it against the backdrop of an upbeat song, because it's celebrating the fact that you're screwed,” laughs Phantom's Kyle Kaplan. “It's like, 'alright, I give up. Whatever.'”

“Pulling Me In” is the ninth track on what will eventually be the duo's debut self-titled LP, Phantoms, and the second single from the as-of-yet undated release. The fact that the 10-track album holds a single-worthy jam of such danceable caliber seems to bode well for the listenability of the rest of the work, but that's the whole idea of releasing an album in the first place.

“Electronic music, is all headed toward singles ... which is fine, but we wanted to come out the gate with something that shows 'hey, this is what we're about, this is our sound, and this is what we think about life,” Kaplan says. “We wanted you to be able to listen to it from front to back. It flows well. Things are there for a reason, the song order and everything. It's not just like, 'here's 20 songs we did, we take 10 of them and put them on a record together.' We put some kind of thought into it that, and hopefully people can feel and see it.”

While “Pulling Me In” is autobiographical, the rest of the album isn't completely built around first-person experiences. Kaplan and Pergola first met as acting students way back when, but they didn't really dig that scene. They found an escape making music together, soon falling under the passionate spell of electronic music culture. As American audiences soon followed suit, they found themselves suddenly with a full-time job.

They put their acting chops to use then writing new material, often putting themselves in the shoes of different personalities and moralities they meet in their travels. They'll also call on their set experience when it comes time to direct the forthcoming “Pulling Me In” music video, something their super excited to come at with full creative control. As with Phantoms' music, Kaplan and Pergola's colorful personalities are sure to shine through in a fun-loving way. Just take a look at the '50s-spoof artwork for the “Pulling Me In” single. Clearly, these are not too guys who want to take themselves too seriously.

Get sucked in to Phantoms' silly, synth-filled universe for yourself and give “Pulling Me In” a listen below, and peep the full Phantoms track list, exclusively on Billboard Dance.

Phantoms Tracklist

1. She Never Tells Me

2. Someone To Talk About ft. Grace Mitchell

3. Downtown

4. Cocaine

5. Throw It In The Fire

6. Just A Feeling

7. Been Here Before

8. Tried To Be Nice ft. Harlie

9. Pulling Me In

10. Whatcha Want Me To Do


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