LA-based band Slow Hollows have recently released new LP, Actors, via their self-run label Not Another Word, with exclusive license to AWAL. Twelve tracks of sheer pop, Actors is an album full of risks, with mich of the album an exploration of sound, crossing into other genres.
Having grown up in the Valley, Austin Anderson took up guitar at the youthful age of ten and began writing his own music, releasing it on Bandcamp through a variety of monikers. After Anderson discovered Los Angeles punk venue The Smell a pivotal change occurred, and it was around this scene that Slow Hollows formed. The band started booking shows themselves at the Smell and recorded their debut, 2015’s Atelophobia, in the venue over the course of two days. The follow-up Romantic came the following year, and the band began selling out venues across LA. in true DIY fashion with no label or management in sight.
The album shuns the fears and insecurities often felt by creatives, resulting in an unbound and intricate body of work. Working alongside a cast of prolific collaborators including Tyler, The Creator, L.A. singer Ryan Beatty, Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor, Bjorn Yttling and Santigold engineer Will Van Boldrik, the band created an expansive auditory experience brimming with sonic detours that form much of the thread that runs through Actors.
A record of complexities spanning indie, dance music and R&B, Actors also carries an immediate streak imbued by songwriter/lead singer Austin Anderson and his compatriots, there is pretty much something there for everyone on this album.
Opener track, Actress is a seductive fusion of jazz and R&B, Anderson’s husky vocals over a stunning brass section. You Are Now On Fire is a pop tune in it’s finest form, percussion heavy with guitar and synth to flesh out that pop sound. Heart takes the vibe back to a more comtemplative form, until the bass drops. And this is really what makes this album, the unexpected twists and turns that Anderson takes throughout Actors. Two Seasons with that pronounced piano intro leads you in the false sense of a power ballad but it soon veers, like much of this album. Cowboy is a lyrical stunner of a track with this opener, “this is an arms call to the heavy, keep your ego as it’s fix,” against acoustic guitar and sparse piano. Blood is throbbing with bass until the synth and Anderson’s vocals kicks in, and chronologically, this track builds, incorporating more and more sounds as it goes on. There is even a hint of Drum n Bass as it concludes. Actors really is an unprectable musical mix, which is refreshingly wonderful to listen to.
Actors is out now, via Not Another Word.