The entrainment between weakly-coupled nonlinear oscillators, as well as between complex signals such as those representing physiological activity, is frequently assessed in terms of whether a stable relationship is detectable between the instantaneous phases extracted from the measured or simulated time-series via the analytic signal. Here, we demonstrate that adding a possibly complex constant value to this normally null-mean signal has a non-trivial warping effect. Among other consequences, this introduces a level of sensitivity to the amplitude fluctuations and average relative phase. By means of simulations of Roessler systems and experiments on single-transistor oscillator networks, it is shown that the resulting coherence measure may have an empirical value in improving the inference of the structural couplings from the dynamics. When tentatively applied to the electroencephalogram recorded while performing imaginary and real movements, this straightforward modification of the phase locking value substantially improved the classification accuracy. Hence, its possible practical relevance in brain-computer and brain-machine interfaces deserves consideration.