Artist: Los Shadows
Title: High Hopes
Release date: August 5, 2017

Los Shadows mark their return with High Hopes, a collection of songs that feel relaxed and intimate, but without losing the energy of earlier releases.

Many bands never develop a consistent identity, but with Los Shadows, this is not the case. They’ve become a local fixture of the San Diego music scene, a product of the burgeoning South Bay boom in quality bands. High Hopes picks up from where they last left us with their previous release, Midnight Climax.

In the intervening time between releases, Los Shadows are a band with a newfound self-assuredness. There’s no doubt that when listening to High Hopes you’re listening to a band that crafted the sound they had in mind. They feel in control, allowing the necessary vulnerability and sincerity to percolate their new record, but never quite giving themselves entirely to the listener; no doubt a machination of intent.

High Hopes feels appropriately restrained, the kind of aloofness someone feigns for the sake of self-preservation. “Miami” is a standout track for its synth-laden dreampop, a canvas of sonic ecology, a balancing act of tender sensitivity and hushed waves of synthesizers. They capitalize on an aesthetic many local bands are attempting and failing to capture, without falling prey themselves to the follies of imitation.

They’ve upped their production value this time around while still retaining the endearing qualities of self-production. It’s clear that they’ve taken what they learned with their last release and applied it to a release that ultimately feels more cohesive, more impactful, and most importantly, more meaningful. There’s a great amount of attention being shown towards Los Shadows, and listening to High Hopes, it becomes increasingly clear why.

Catch Los Shadows at Fair at 44 for their release party for High Hopes on August 5th.

Review by: Brian Strauss (Foxx Press)