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Cover art for Malibu Nights by LANY

If you want to listen to California heartthrobs deliver heart-wrenching, yet relatable lyrics over a synth blanketed pop album, LANY has got you covered with their sophomore, full length album, Malibu Nights.

LANY has had explosive success in the past two years, most notably overseas.

Their previous, self titled album is one of my all time favorite albums, so my expectations were high.

The band consist of a modest 3 members; Paul Klein, Les Priest, and Jake Goss. Paul Klein, the lead singer of the band spoke about the album in an extensive interview with Billboard.

“I think it’s different in all the right ways,” Klein said. “It’s the same in all the right ways. I don’t think we sound like a different band. I think we still sound like LANY and ultimately we just made the best LANY album. I think its different in introducing those elements that we haven’t really discovered or tapped into in the past. On some songs, technically speaking, there’s only one of my vocals on ‘Malibu Nights.’ The only time we’ve ever done something like that is with ‘ILYSB (Stripped).’ We tend to stack vocals, and that’s been a sonic identity that we’ve had in the past, but just trying new things like that is how it’s different. Working with older and wiser guys that know more than us with an outside perspective, it was cool to have a sounding board like that,” Klein said.

Do not be deceived by the sound of this album. At first it might seem super upbeat and fun, but a closer look at the lyrics proves otherwise.

The project opens strongly with the upbeat Thick and Thin. This happy sounding song revolves around broken promises, and failed expectations. This is a theme that continues throughout the album.

Taking Me Back feels like a song I would hear in an 80’s teen movie. The choppy cadence of the chorus feels very much so of that decade. The synth solo after the bridge is a huge highlight on the album. 

If You See Her continues to impress with their classic sound. Listening to the pre-chorus feels like you’re walking up and down steps, which is cool.

The group is currently tour, and recently had a show in London, England. Their media team was able to make an awesome recap of the night.

I Don’t Wanna Love You Anymore will get stuck in your head all day. The chorus is ultra catchy, and the melodies are great. I’m a big fan of the piano version that was uploaded to their Youtube channel. It feels very authentic, and perfectly heartbreaking.

Let Me Know is the ultimate chill jam. I’m a fan of the lo-fi beat, everything in this song is subtle and easy going. A guaranteed pleasant listen.

In my opinion, Run is the most unique song of the album. It has a hip-hop beat similar to what you might hear on a song by The Weeknd. The guitar on this song was awesome, the imperfect slides up and down on the strings added a lot of depth.

I highly anticipated Valentine’s Day, just because the title left me curious. The distant percussion is sweet, and then it gets very near at the turnaround, which happens a little after the 2 minute mark. A crisp electric guitar is introduced, which adds a lot of flavor.

Thru These Tears is the most popular track for a reason. The arpeggiated vocal sample adds a very unique sound, only to drop out to make way for a deep, wubbing synthesizer. Just when you thought this song was solely electronic, a piano break before the bridge change your mind and adds a whole new layer.

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Lead singer, Paul Klein, performs at Coachella Music & Festival 2018.

LANY was able to perform this song live on the Today Show recently, only furthering their popularity.

Concluding the album, we find the title track, Malibu Nights. The whole album builds to this stripped piano ballad. By far the saddest song of the album, because the lyrics are very transparent and vulnerable. It is only appropriate to end a breakup album, with the perfect breakup song.

Overall, I was a huge fan of this album. I believe that these songs could even make them a household name. I’ve been following them for a while, so it’s cool to see their growth over the years.

Feather author Richie Cortez is a huge fan of LANY. I was able to have a conversation with him about the band, and their growth. We discuss what the band calls the “Rose Era”, and the “Moon Era”.

No matter what you think about the lyrics, this album is beautifully engineered. Every sound and texture is mixed to perfection. Some instruments are distant, others are right up in your face, keeping you on your toes.

This album is my favorite pop album release as of recent, even more so than Voicenotes by Charlie Puth.

For more music reviews, read America and III

This author can be reached via Twitter @logan6300 and email:

Malibu Nights
4.5 / 5 Reviewer
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