Review: Wallows' star rises even further on new album Model

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The LA-indie-rock trio return with their third album Model, enthused with brightly sounding guitars and intimate lyrics of relatability – this new release is sure to unleash a new precedent for the band, as they keep pushing the standard of their genre further and further.

Forming in 2017 and having two albums already under their belt is an impressive feat for most bands, with their debut indie garage rock critical success of Nothing Happens laying down the landscape in 2019 while establishing and finding their footing within the music scene.

They have only grown since, their sophomore indie-pop release of Tell Me That It's Over which saw a 2022 release, saw their music reach larger and larger audiences worldwide.

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Now with the release of Model, Dylan Minette (vocals, guitar), Braeden Lemasters (vocals, guitars), and Cole Preston (drums) secure themselves slots at legendary worldwide venues such as Alexandra Palace in London and Madison Square Garden in New York for their upcoming tour.

LA indie rock trio Wallows are back with a new album ModelLA indie rock trio Wallows are back with a new album Model
LA indie rock trio Wallows are back with a new album Model

With this album having the shortest release span between albums, the American-rooted band stated it took them only a couple of months after their last tour to return to the studio, to produce what is a staple of their sound and creativity.

The 12-track compilation kicks off with their first single to be released from the album – Your Apartment, a catchy yet impactful track, that feels very much like the predecessor to festival favourite Remember When.

With a poignant chorus ready for festival season, and underlying themes of relationship struggles, the track navigates between the lines of catchiness and personal growth that resonated massively with their fanbase as it became their most streamed tune within under a week, as it sets the tone and standard for the rest of the tracklist.

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Second in line is Anytime, Always as it follows on from the thematic album opener and delves into their pop sensibilities, with an addictive sour hook and pop-based elements it’s a polished and intricate track layered with Minette’s vocals that deliver a punchy yet short melancholic addition to the collection of Model.

Third in line is their second single – Calling After Me is blazed with an alternative 2000s rock sound that shines as a sunny yet memorable addition to the album.

Surpassing the success of Your Apartment the release of Calling After Me saw the group burn through their previous record, as the track called in the highest number of streams in under a week for the band, as the jangly sounding guitars feel like the initiation of 2024’s summer.

The mellow yet atmospheric Bad Dream slows down the album with a dreamlike sensation of harmonic melodies, yet a moody undertone that is nicely accompanied by Braeden’s vocals, making for an emotional and introspective anthem that slots its way into the album sweetly.

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A Warning follows the tone and feel of a Bad Dream as the song has a bittersweet creation of emotions, riding on the sound of that alternative late-noughties wave, the music itself is a progressive and strong pushing of the California band’s ability to craft festival anthems, while still being able to slow down to carefully create soothing summer inspired tracks such as A Warning.

Finding ourselves at the halfway point of the album sees I Wouldn’t Mind holding down the midway point of the album, another short track still on the mellower side, with a hypnotic chorus laced with the band’s smooth vocal deliveries and a whistling hook, it sees out the A side of the album in style.

Onto the B side of this summer fuelled journey sees their latest and final single before the album release - You (Show Me Where My Days Went), released only a couple of days from the publication date, it is a melodic and calming opener to the second side of Model, with a memorable guitar hook that compliments Minette’s vocals into a snappy singable heartbreak anthem.

Canada carries on the relationship-based introspect themes that the album has raced through, and sees a more electronic-driven style similar to their sophomore album Tell Me That It's Over, with modern synth textures being applied to the track to cement its place in the tracklist.

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Don’t You Think It’s Strange pulls the album in a direction acquainted with a sound close to Foster The People’s Torches and adjusts it to make it their own. The hidden synths, the driving guitars, and Braeden’s vocals all contribute to a distinguishable gem stored away at the end of the album sure to make a notable appearance on their setlist for their upcoming tour.

Next up is the refined yet authentic She’s An Actress, with lyrics such as “Can you tell I’m nervous by my complexion” showing the Golden State band’s songwriting skills honed into their very sincerest, with an aspect of angst and realism pulling the tuneful piece together.

The penultimate track Going Under continues the angsty feelings, with vocal effects alike to The Strokes and their game-changing album Is This It being applied to create a track that pays tribute to the aforementioned band, while still having that clean production style Wallows has been able to establish over their years of song making.

Reaching the end of the album, the last stop being Only Ecstasy a sweet and stirring composition, which made its live debut at a few festivals a couple of months before the album was even known, the track itself is a perfect embodiment of the Model’s themes and makes for an exemplary end to an album that is sure to only push this band’s ever raising star higher and higher.

Wallows new album Model is out on streaming platforms everywhere now.

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