Guitarist Φ Composer 

"We came across Phi’s new album a few months ago and were blown away by its Zappa-esque exuberance and psychedelic colour. It’s a refreshing sonic journey. The title track is a particular highlight with a 60s San Francisco bohemian vibe, tasty 7/8 time signature, shimmery harmonic shifts, gorgeous vocal stabs and a beautiful whammy-infused solo. Superstar Christobal Vs The Archdemon Of Time is a wonderment of groove, chord changes and more lovely guitar playing that dips between blues-rock and crazy Vai-like phrasing. He can mosh too - Sasquatch Stomp has a menacing riff and layered guitar lines. Wickety Wickety is an ominously cartoon-ish song that evokes childhood nightmares watching the 70s film of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, or the trip-out elephant dancing scene from Disney’s Dumbo. In short, Phi is quite the genius!”  Guitar Techniques Magazine, Issue 350, August 2023.

The music of Phi Yaan-Zek comes from unusual roots, blending a musical background in classical, jazz, progressive rock and avant-garde improvisational forms with the Indian music of his family upbringing. He has recorded and performed in Europe and the US with the likes of Mike Keneally (Frank Zappa), Marco Minnemann, Bryan Beller, Andy Edwards, Morgan Ågren, Ron Thal, Steve Lawson and Lalle Larsson among others. With 11 album releases to his name since 1997, Phi’s dynamic musical vision dances yin-yang style between the polarities of passionate dark intensity and warm otherworldly playfulness. For playfulness, think of iconic British children’s TV theme tunes from the 70s and 80s which have occasionally in a subtle way infused his sound! His music has also been described as blending the intricate West Coast rock guitar sounds of pioneers such as Frank Zappa and Steve Vai, with British off-kilter eccentricity exemplified by XTC, Cardiacs, Gentle Giant, while drawing on orchestral and filmscore influences such as Igor Stravinsky, György Ligeti and John Barry. Not to mention a passionate love of world music that spans Brazilian Tropicália to West African Blues to Indonesian Gamelan to Swedish avant-pop. The result is an imaginative genre-melting musical universe that blends vibrant rhythms, fiery guitar, exotic melodies and extended jazz harmonies into an orchestrated psychedelic cauldron.

A prolific creator, Phi also works as a media composer and producer with works spanning from the 2004 Wisdom of the Ancients documentary and multi-media exhibition to current BETA product testing and composition for Soundiron (Kontakt sound library company). He also produces neo-classical chamber pieces under the name Everpresence and psychedelic electronica under the alias Auric Fields.

Some selected Interviews & Reviews:

Music Web Express

Sea Of Tranquility

The Progressive Aspect

Φ Discography:

Φ Other Projects:

Φ Compilations & Guest Performances:


© Phi Yaan-Zek 2024