Psychic Hotline



PSY-912 • Released: October 30, 2020


Azaleas is the sound of Bowerbirds’ Phil Moore wrestling with uncertainty; it’s a succinct examination of how Bowerbirds’ hopefulness endures, in spite of itself. Written and recorded in just a few weeks at Moore’s North Carolina home during quarantine, on these songs, Bowerbirds’ subtle, tender folk rails against capitalism and complacency, rippling with the frustration of wanting to push back against the world at large.

Like Bowerbirds earlier 2020 EP, Endless Chase: 2020 Singles, Azaleas mines Moore’s memories for inspiration – but here, that collides sharply with existential malaise. These six songs exist in the strange, stark chasm between the dread of the present and the warmth of nostalgia, teetering between now and then.

The bookends of Azaleas contain Moore’s thesis in its purest form. Opener “Home Wrecker” unfolds with him wondering, “What’s it all worth in the end? As long as there’s lives left, there’s lives left to waste, trying to push back against the weight of how fucked we all are”. But by the end, he’s come back around –closer “No One Left in the Garden,” written for Moore’s son, is sanguine and inherently forward-looking. He’s buoyed by his faith in the person his son is becoming, and how he seems better off with handling hardships than his father. It’s like leaving places better than we found them –it’s the cyclical nature of how and why we come around to believe in the future again, even when the odds seem against it.