Single Review: Los Espinas - 'Shadowboxing'


The territory between interesting and derivative often merge into one when it comes down to guitar driven indie rock. But regardless of this, (or maybe because of this) it is one of the most sought after styles of music. It  balances pop accessibility with heavier aspects of sound and structure and this means there is a vastness in the fan base that it reaches.

 'Shadowboxing', the debut single from Sydney-based three-piece Los Espinas' is both interesting and derivative, but this is not an insult. The underlying chord progressions and emotion in the vocals are very familiar. They're tried, tested and approved and this works very well in Los Espinas' favour. It allows the listener to enjoy the song immediately from the opening hook, and to have already formed a relationship with the song as if they've always known it.

As the track progresses, it's clear that Los Espinas have added parts of their own personality as a band to the track, with the familiar just being a basic foundation for more experimentation. Los Espinas are tight but also of the DIY/Garage approach, There's some great groovy, grunge infused bass work here, as well as dreamy guitar riffs and some psychedelia-style extended arrangements, which shy away from the popular. It's also great to see a band who are largely using their drum rhythm as well as guitar riffs as a driving force. This heightens the intensity of the narrator's situation in their personal life that they have been shadowboxing.

With a sound that is caught somewhere between nostalgic and current.  Accessible and independent. It's early days for Los Espinas, but by using 'Shadowboxing' as a makeshift, we have high hopes for their debut EP due for release somewhere around the mid-year mark.

Words of Karla Harris

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