[REVIEW] Portugal. The Man – “Evil Friends”

As strange and obscure indie music seems to be “in” now, Portland Oregon’s Portugal. The Man could very well be gravitating ever closer to the center of the scene, especially after the release of 2013’s Evil Friends.  Produced by Danger Mouse, Evil Friends is Portugal. The Man’s seventh full-length release and second release through Atlantic Records.

The new album is immeasurably catchy from top to bottom.  It sounds like a mix between Foster The People’s Torches and Grouplove’s Never Trust A Happy Song, with a little extra awesome folded in.  That is not to say, however, that Portugal. The Man sound like everything else out there. Yes, they have similar musical elements and influences to other groups in their particular scene, but that happens with any genre.  Still, these guys have a different story to tell than other bands.  They are on their way to the top from the bottom.  After leading the DIY lifestyle for several years, Portugal. The Man are currently signed to Atlantic Records.

With their personal brand of indie rock, Portugal. The Man are undeniably forging a mark on the evolving music industry.  Evil Friends signifies that fact.  The band’s creativity could not be clearer in this effort.  One example of that creativity is the apparent slight nod to Martika’s 1989 single, “Toy Soldiers,” toward the end of “Plastic Soldiers.”

Song highlights include “Modern Jesus,” “Hip Hop Kids,” and “Waves.”

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