ALBUM REVIEW: Shadows Like Strangers – Cali

Forming in late 2018, Nottingham based quartet Shadows Like Strangers have had quite the journey, culminating with their debut album Cali which was released earlier this month.

The band themselves admit to taking their influences from the likes of U2, Feeder and Mallory Knox and these influences come through almost immediately. Initially we did think that with an album titled Cali we’d be in for a more American sounding band, and this does come across in some of the tracks, but it’s safe to say that the Brit pop/indie sound is endemic throughout.

The album starts with Counterpart, an upbeat sounding track, which gives a taste of what the guys can do. It sounds like pop, it sounds like indie and it sounds like rock – there’s pretty much something for all of our readers right there! This theme continues throughout the album; in almost every track you can hear a beat or rhythm that reminds you of another rock or indie song. Night Vision’s first few riffs sound exactly like Kings of Leon & Use Somebody but once the track gets going, there is a hint of The Libertines.

One of the heavier tracks of the album, The Art of Falling Down, has a Halestorm & I Get Off vibe to it and it’s no wonder that the band released it as a single. It promotes a message of positivity, how after hitting the ground it’s always worth getting up again, and with almost 15,000 listens on YouTube you can tell it’s one that appeals to the fans as well.

We particularly enjoyed Coast to Coast, in fact we decided it would be our track of the album on the first hearing; starting off with seagulls and a car radio being adjusted you think you’re about to listen to a top down, catchy summer road-trip track, but what you get is something grittier, singing about running on empty and moving on from a relationship.

Having grabbed the attention, and the priceless airplay that it brings, of BBC Nottingham with their debut single A Way Home and supporting rockers Lacey at Nottingham’s Rock City, things are certainly looking up for the Shadows Like Strangers. Given how refined the album sounds, along with its smooth melodies and infectious lyrics they’re almost the perfect band to feature on any alt rock/indie radio station. At 10 tracks, no one will accuse the band of short changing the paying public, and with such a blend of sounds we’re sure there’s something in there for everyone.


Standout Track: Coast to Coast

For Fans Of: U2, Feeder and Mallory Knox

Written by: Omar Malick

I’ve been writing for Bring the Noise for almost a year, prior to this I used to be a games tester for Microsoft but these days you’ll find me writing reviews for all sorts of films and for the occasional rock album and gig. Bring the Noise have been awesome to me & have given me a chance to write & reach an audience & hopefully if I don’t screw up you’ll see lots more of my stuff in the coming months and years