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Portugal. The Man – Evil Friends Album Review

Portugal. The Man, Atlantic Records

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Portugal. The Man (PTM) is an indie rock band from Wasilla, Alaska. Evil Friends is Portugal. The Man’s 7th album, released June 4th, 2013. Personally, I’ve been a fan of Portugal. The Man for a while, and I believe Evil Friends is the best album they’ve produced so far.

Starting off Evil Friends with the song Plastic Soldiers, felt a little slow. In my opinion, the lyrics were quite predictable, the chord scheme was pretty average and boring for a PTM song. Being the longest song on the album, around five minutes, the song actually felt quite longer. It’s a slow lead into such a fast-paced album.

Moving on to the albums second song, Creep in a T-Shirt. This song feels like a much quicker, more efficient lead for the album. There’s an interesting synth in the pre-chorus that really fills some empty space well, the horns in the chorus are great effects and add to the song immensely as well. Overall, this song comes together great.

Next, the third song on the album. The title track, Evil Friends. First off, Evil Friends is my overall favorite song on this album. The garage punk-esque sound of this song plays off really well. At the start of the song, it’s very slow and lead singer John Gourley makes a great, mysterious introduction. There’s some odd bell-like synths that surprisingly fit very well. The lyrics fit fantastically with the instrumental.

On to the fourth song, Modern Jesus. This song has a great guitar part, and the lyrics fit with the song great. The synth is a little annoying throughout the song, but the song wouldn’t be the same without it. Overall, the song comes together pretty well.

To the fifth song, Hip Hop Kids. If I’m being honest, at first I truly didn’t like this song, but the song grew on me. Although the lyrics are kind of bland, the instrumental stands out to me. There’s not a lot to say about this song, other than it’s a good album filler.

Atomic Man, the sixth song on the album, has a fantastic instrumental. Not to say the lyrics are inadequate, but the instrumental definitely stands out. The ambient noises and the use of synths makes this song burst with little background noises that fill the song. The hard-hitting drums really fit into the song amazingly too.

Moving onto Sea of Air, the seventh song on the album. This song is pretty slow, but it all fits with the nice light guitar, the lyrics, and the almost melancholy vibe it give off. Definitely one of my top five on this album.

To the eighth song on the album, Waves. This song doesn’t have much going for it but the chorus. The clash of instruments in the chorus is a fantastic match to the lyrics, but the rest of the song is pretty bland.

Holy Roller, the ninth song on Evil Friends, is super catchy. The loose, confident sounding guitar playing, the transitions in the song flow very well, the lyrics are plain great, and the gritty voice filter on the chorus just tops it off well. I’ve found my self humming this song or it being stuck in my head quite often.

Next is Someday Believers. The intro to this song felt a bit misleading to me, like maybe I should’ve expected something different. Once the song starts up though, it’s catchy and altogether pretty solid.

Purple Yellow Red and Blue, Portugal. The Man’s most popular song of 2013, is the 11th song on Evil Friends. It feels like a step taken away from PTM’s normal style, and it ends up working quite well. In my opinion, this song feels almost like an electronic music style. The lyrics are great, and I feel like they fit the song almost perfectly.

The last song on the album, Smile, feels like a great way to end Evil Friends. The slow, intricate guitar part and the odd drum pattern really fits into the song beautifully. A slow song may not have worked to start up this album, but it definitely worked to end it.

I give this album an 8 out of 10. Although some songs on Evil Friends I absolutely love, there’s just some songs that I really can’t bring myself to like. Evil Friends is definitely one of my favorite albums of 2013.

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Portugal. The Man – Evil Friends Album Review