Phem is a true gem. She is a part of a movement supporting a generation of people that are dealing with mental illness and distress. Her music connects people and her fanbase supports each other as one. I didn’t start listening to Phem until recently after I listened to this ep – everything made sense. She is a girl that deserves everything coming to her. Her voice glides like water streaming through a creek. I am really happy to have dove into her lyrics and her persona. Phem tweets, “top favorite artists right now @sbgabrielblack @KennyHoopla @brakence”. When I read that, I was like “damn”. She is putting on Kenny Hoopla and brakence, she cares so much about others’ music.
The first song off this ep is “honest” ft. Iann Dior. Phem and Iann take on the chorus and it couldn’t have sounded any better. Phem talks about giving her whole heart to her significant other. She sings, “Don’t start running away, I’ll give you anything…Got me going out of my way, to get the best for you…Don’t start making me beg, I’ll give you everything…My heart is yours to take, is it enough?”. The quality of the sound blew me away. Joe Grasso did a great job on the engineering of this ep, really making the vocals professional and clear.
The rest of her songs on this ep followed a similar narrative. Phem joined forces with Arizona Iced Tea’s 99 Projects for “stfu” and “self control”. In the “stfu” video, there is a shrine filled with pictures of her, negative thoughts, and even a blog post from billboard. Phem is crafted into a wooden figurine in her “stfu” up video. She feels pressure in all aspects of her life and can’t understand what her brain is telling her.
In her song “useless”, Phem “beats herself up” and talks about her insecurities. Her lyrics are the narratives of many teenagers and this song sums up her livelihood. Phem is truly for the people struggling. Phem told Arizona Tea, “Mental health and mental health awareness are extremely important to me because I’ve struggled with it, and so many people close to me have as well. My new EP is very focused on this issue. […] All I wanna do is just be more honest and upfront about what I’m going through, in the hopes that other people won’t feel so alone.” I am very excited to listen to more of her previous work, you can stream “how u stop hating urself (pt1)” below.