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Los Colognes Make Pristine Guitar Travelogue With ‘The Wave’ (ALBUM REVIEW)

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The Nashville five-piece Los Colognes third studio album The Wave is a pristine work of bright indie/dream pop that brightens any speakers it flows through. It is an ear-catching, complete artistic work from a group that is clearly gaining in confidence.  

There are many touch points for the ten track musical travelogue but sticking to late seventies/mid-eighties pop rings truest; perhaps it is the nautical references but Yacht Rock is also never far from the surface. The opener “Sneakin’ Breadcrumbs” puts a modern spin on that sound, recalling The Slip, dancey and dreamy all surrounded by a sweet pop rock shell.    

Never in too much of a hurry, the band floats, soaking in the musical sunshine with the tracks that worm into your brain such as “A-OK” or “Unspoken”. Both recall the cinematic touches of Dire Straits while managing to sound warm and welcoming. Closer “Can You Remember?” tries to amp up the groove but just dips into a hip-shaking rolling number that sails away into the horizon.   

“Molly B. Good” could work during those bygone days as a radio-ready single and “The White Whale” contains a rootsy upbeat singalong. The band digs deeper, pulling on prog rock roots in the Pink Floyd vein, with “Man Overboard”, the darkest track here which grounds things, adding a sense of foreboding that comes at just the right time in the album’s sequence.

Lyrics directly reference smooth travels such as on “Flying Apart”, capturing that theme (both lyrically and musically) with “Nobody believed/We’re all just hoping/Floating down streams”. “Forever In Between” continues these thoughts by even copping a phrase from “Row Row Your Boat” while “A-OK” does the same for “Zippity Doo Da”. These aren’t deep thoughts by any stretch and too often the lyrics are just colors to the sonic pallette, but when paired with the excellent production, crisp drumming and constantly shining guitars, not much else is needed.

Los Colognes have crafted a smooth offering that hits the shimmering high notes with ease. The gentle, softly progressing feel, drifts into each track and creates resounding after effect.

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