Out of the Shadow
by Devon McReynolds
Rogue Wave’s debut album Out of the Shadow is packed with the same cheerful indie pop as the Shins, and is in fact on the same Sub Pop record label. But, the similarities go far beyond the shared label and genre. The influences of the Shins on Rogue Wave are evident in the vocal styles, easygoing melodies, and unconventional instrumental effects.
Out of the Shadow is very mellow and relaxing to listen to, but every song has its own intriguing appeal. The album opens with "Every Moment", and I was blown away the first time I heard it by the harmonious chorus "I used to think about you and me together," sung ever so wistfully by lead singer/guitarist Zach Rogue. "Kicking the Heart Out" is another key track that has the same romance. With intertwining acoustic guitar melodies and earnest lyrics ("If music is my lover/ you are just a tease"), it is complimented by hand claps and even a wispy synth that resembles a cell phone ringtone. This song particularly exemplifies the understated instrumental complexities prevalent on the entire album.
While some small sections of the album are a little weak and the rhythms repetitive, overall Out of the Shadow is more interesting than any Shins album. If you are as avid a Shins fan as I am, but are looking for a little more spice, I suggest you pick up Rogue Wave’s smashing debut album and enjoy yourself.