Phosphorescent: An Understated, Epic 'Song For Zula'

Apr 27, 2013
Originally published on July 2, 2014 2:05 pm

As worked into the opening line of the brilliant "Song for Zula" by Phosphorescent's Matthew Houck, the famous words "Love is a burning thing" set the scene for one of the best songs Houck has ever written.

Recalling the atmospheric nature of classic U2 ballads, "Song for Zula" connects immediately. It's beautiful, introspective and expansive, and this live version from WFUV's Studio A adds another adjective to that mix: passionate. While chatting with Houck about Phosphorescent's new album Muchacho, it became evident that "Song for Zula" holds deep meaning for him — no surprise, considering its epic feel. This is one of the songs of the year, no question.

Watch more of Phosphorescent's studio session at


  • Host: Russ Borris
  • Audio: Dylan Hasson
  • Cameras: Patrick Doherty, Deirdre Hynes, Claire Lorenzo
  • Editor: Claire Lorenzo
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