Surfaces’s new album, Horizons, radiates positivity in tough times


maja on pinterest

The cover art for Surfaces’s Horizon album

Just by the sound of the first note of a song, you could tell that it was written by Surfaces. 

On February 28, 2020, the group released their third album, Horizons. Honestly, I think this album—chocked full of positive vibes—was released at just the right time. The pandemic hit a few weeks after the release, which brought a lot of uncertainty—this album can be seen as a reassuring remedy.

The duo, Colin Padalecki and Forrest Frank, have no trouble standing out from other musicians. 

It’s difficult to describe their style of music—it could possibly be considered as reggae, pop, hip hop, and a little bit of soul. Whatever the sound identifies as, it carries its theme throughout every single song. Though all of their songs sound very much the same, they each carry their own meaning.

Mixed throughout this 12-song album are messages of happiness, good energy, enjoyment, and overall looking for the best in life—a message that I think many need to hear.

The suave melodies make you feel like you are reclining on a Caribbean beach with a sweet fruit smoothie in your hand and sunglasses resting on your face. As I was listening to the songs, I couldn’t help but sway to the tunes. 

The suave melodies make you feel like you are reclining on a Caribbean beach with a sweet fruit smoothie in your hand and sunglasses resting on your face.”

At one point, however, I noticed that I got tired of listening to the album after an hour or so. This is one downfall of having all the songs sound relatively the same within the album. Though the lyrics are different, I couldn’t quite get over the constant repetition of the same techno sound. 

Therefore, I found that I enjoyed the similar songs when they were mixed in a more diverse playlist rather than all together. 

Despite the repetition, these songs radiate good vibes; I really don’t recall hearing one negative lyric. 

Some of the songs, such as “Rising,” didn’t necessarily contain any words at all, unless you count “ah-ah-ah” as a word; I thought that choice was bold. The wordless songs weren’t my favorite, though the instrumentals accompaniment was quite unique. 

One song that stood out to me among the rest was “Take It Easy.” With the steel drums and the easy-to-follow beat, I was able to immerse myself in the message that the lyrics were trying to convey. Lines such as “leave your worries at the door/ watch them as they drop to the floor” not only provided excellent imagery but were sometimes exactly what I needed to hear. 

It’s easy to tell that this duo did a lot of experimenting with sound and gadgets to give their songs the little details that make them stand out among other artists in a similar genre. 

Hints of retro, disco, and techno themes were included in some of the songs, yet they didn’t feel aged or out of date. The quality was rejuvenated when mixed with the more current beat and made for a really unusual tune. Since this is not something I’d typically listen to, it was interesting to discover that this revamped version of that type of music appealed to me. 

My favorite addition to the album is “Sunny Side Up.” There were a lot of breakfast time references that set a typical morning scene, but the lyrics were meant to be metaphorical as well. “I keep my sunny side up/ so they can see me from above” is the chorus, and it symbolizes always showing your best side and keeping your hopes up. 

Though Horizons contained so many relatable, encouraging lyrics and a unique tone, it wouldn’t be one I would be able to listen to for hours on end. When listened to in small pieces, the music is vibey and definitely worth the listen.