By Robbie Nevel
Shangri-Lá uses tools of modern synth-rock to create a unique sound that is is unmistakable and just plain good. Some bands just make you want to just vibe out, but some bands make you feel something deep inside – while grooving out of course. Shangri Lá is quite good at making both those things happen at once.
Shangri-Lá rises to the top in a city full of cookie-cutter, mundane sparkly poppy keyboard fueled groups. Right off the bat the songwriting is flawless. Unconventional harmonies weave in and out of Mango Sterling’s catchy vocal melodies. It’s the cherry on top of instrumentalists Felix Ovalle and Kike Sevilla’s beautiful soundscapes. Synthesizer melodies and four-on-the-floor beats come together in a beautiful warm arrangement.
Ovalle and Kike extract the best colors out of the past three decades of electro-pop, while Sterling’s unique voice still seems to touch on the best points of every indie pop singer from Emily Haines of Metric to Skye Edwards of Morcheeba. The three musicians come together with a chemistry and character all too absent from the pop music world.
They’ve just released “IDK,” the last of the nine songs in their upcoming new album. It’s a ridiculously catchy and fast moving tune that shifts from part to part, with each section being even more addictive than the last. Elevating musically as each part of the song unfurls, it all comes to a peak with a tasteful pop guitar solo from guitarist Sevilla. It’s just a small morsel of the tasty treat that is listening to the whole album front to back.
The collection of nine songs contains no fluff, and all tracks feature high end production. Their original music is joined by “Bette Davis Eyes” by singer-songwriter Kim Carnes, a good fit for a cover. Those are available on Reverbnation or Soundcloud and if that isn’t enough, you can catch them at the Metric after-party at Kill Your Idol on South Beach, on Thursday, August 1st with openers Hoffa HQ and special guests DJ Mamey Disco & Friends (RSVP).