SHALLOU, Magical Thinking
I’m not much into listening to full albums these days. But in the electronic dance music world, on occasion there are some special ones that come along, and I’m thinking of those in recent years by the likes of 3LAU, Illenium, Shoffy, and Tritonal among others. You can easily add Shallou’s debut album Magical Thinking to that list. And it’s funny because the music of the L.A.-based producer otherwise known as Joe Boston had not really resonated with me before. Magical Thinking isn’t much of a party album, it’s a thoughtful, lyrical, often danceable, and deftly structured release with sometimes ear-dropping production that deserves to be heard all of the way through for full effect. It has major contributions that all work in their own ways from The Knocks, Grammy-winner Daya, Ashe, and Bob Moses (who co-produced “Fading”). The songs I will steer you to for starters are “Good Together” (featuring Ashe singing with Shallou, who has a soft but earnest voice himself throughout the album), the highlight which will simply warm your heart; “Make Believe”, which has a James Blake vibe about it; and “Mutual Love”, with a really sweet vocal by Zachary Knowles. After a number of years of releasing singles and remixing others, Magical Thinking definitely assures Shallou his proper place in the electronic dance artist world. Fans of 3LAU’s Ultraviolet album will find Magical Thinking to be equally appealing.