Sophia Exiner, who writes, performs and records under the moniker of Phia is a Australian-born and Berlin, Germany-based indie pop artist whose sound has been compared to the likes of Bjork, tUnE yArDs, Regina Spektor and others —and considering that all of those artists have developed reputations for work that’s unique, uncompromising, challenging and yet entirely approachable. Exiner, has received attention internationally with the release of “Do You Ever,” a track that employs the use of loop pedals to create the song’s harmony and melody with her own voice, and with the kalimba, an African thumb piano, popular throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. In fact, she’s recently been dubbed “one of most underrated of Australia’s musical exports” by Indie Shuffle.
Interestingly, “Do You Ever,” was produced by her boyfriend Josh Teicher, who is performs in Mez Medallion, a Berlin-based band with a sound that bears a resemblance to In Ghost Colours-era Cut Copy, St. Lucia and others — we’re talking about a shimmering, synthesizer and guitar-based pop with incredibly funky bass, and earnestly sung lyrics, usually concerned with affairs of the heart.
During a break from recording her forthcoming full-length album, Exiner and Teicher were part of a group of 10 Berlin-based artists who took part of a special CD compilation to celebrate Rolling Stone Germany’s David Bowie exhibition. Their contribution to the Bowie compilation is a version of “As the World Falls Down” turns the song into a breezy and very sweet love song with a sparse arrangement of vocals, guitar, looped kalimba and Teicher and Exiner’s vocals.