27 September 2023

Hidden Youth

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Reviewed by Ian Phillips.

By Surfaces, 10K (Projects) 2022.

Surfaces is the performance vehicle for Forrest Frank and Colin Padalecki, two former Texas college students, who in the last five years have gone from bedroom musicians to sold-out tours, collaborating with Elton John, and playing late-night national Talk shows.

When they started out, they were just sharing their musical experimentations and hanging out however all that changed with the success of their debut release which they thought might be of interest to a few dozen friends.

They greatly underestimated their efforts.

Forrest Frank does the vocals and production while Colin Padalecki does the writing and arrangements, and the two of them have so far produced four self-recorded-produced albums.

Their first effort, Surf (2017), quickly grabbed the attention of the music press and listening public and the boys followed its success withWhere The light Is (2019) which included the hit single Sunday Best.

It catapulted them to stardom.

That single achieved RIAA double-Platinum and went on to surpass 2.5 million streams and broke into the Billboard Top 100 reaching a peak at number nine.

They continued the momentum with Horizons in 2020 which contained their hit collaboration with Elton John Learn To Fly and another Top 100 single Take It Easy.

In 2021 they released Pacifico which featured two more singles chart successes in Wave To You and Come With Me.

Their latest effort Hidden Youth breaks with the tried and tested formula so far adopted of working in their own home spaces.

It was recorded in a house in the desert at Joshua Tree where they spent time experimenting on a new palate of sounds inspired by the likes of Tame Impala.

The result is probably their most commercially accomplished release to date.

The production values have jumped up a couple of notches and it’s all round a more polished effort.

The album is an easy listening collection of 14 songs that leans toward the mellow rather than edgy end of indie pop/rock.

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