Brooklyn outfit Las Rosas’ sophomore album Shadow by Your Side came into the world this past Friday via Greenway Records and it’s feel-good, psychedelic-garage rock gem of a record. The band don’t drop the ball with their second effort and deliver a sonic rewind of the daily trials and tribulations that we all deal with: love, lacking our idea of success, maneuvering relationships of various types, and more. The band elaborates on their cool, jangle rock-pop sound throughout this record and it’s got some resonating grooving, punchy aspects that arise throughout the album. Read more below to hear what influenced each clever, engaging track from lead singer and guitarist Jose Boyer.
The first half of the song is about being friends with a ghost, but more like roommates, where you dump out your day’s baggage on them and also they’re little annoying. I grafted that to the only usable bit of a different song I wrote nine years ago, about a woman I met with spooky powers over my little heart.
We wrote this song last. It’s a fully grumpy tantrum about not making any money despite all the work it takes to do a band. While I was working out the parts I made several iphone demos, each time naming the file after different Beatles song— Let It Be, Yesterday. At the studio, producer Kevin McMahon named it Tax Man because he is smarter than us.
“I’m a chill guy. Here’s some examples of how laid back I am. Here’s Christopher’s awesome chill background vocals. Bass player is killing it. Let’s add a nonchalant outro. Boom, it’s a single.”
It’s a sweet story where someone you love hypnotizes you into getting back together even though you went into that fondue restaurant convinced you were going to end it forever. You even practiced in front of a mirror.
Imagine you’re walking across a party holding a glass of red wine, and you stumble on someone’s foot. And as you try to avoid falling, you make this slow-motion attempt to wrangle the wine glass so that you don’t splash it on any of the guests. But despite, or even because of your efforts, you manage to splash red wine on every person in your path as glass smashes everywhere and you fall on your face. This song is a metaphor for dating people.
“Dinner For One”
When you break up with someone you were planning to marry, you unexpectedly get to do all sorts of stuff on your own terms, and it feels exhilarating.
“Flood This House”
This was from before the breakup, where I was harboring a fantasy of moving back to the South and getting a pickup truck and a house in the country, relinquishing wealth, making a baby and a loving home, and protecting its integrity by battling the forces of modern chaos with pure love and isolation. The middle part was written much later and it’s about how it’s a bad idea to ask someone out on a date without first fully shedding that intense Southern Gothic thing.
“Losing No Sleep”
Again with the breakup…
An old one we’d never finished for some reason, from our early days as a band. It’s a reference to our old rehearsal space which was in a shared warehouse in Queens with a few fabrication shops and some artist studios. The shops were loud and dusty, the place smelled terrible, and many of the artists lived upstairs illegally. One day we arrived to learn that one of the artists working directly overhead had died from a heroin overdose. We had developed the instrumentation of this song earlier that week, mere feet from his undiscovered dead body. We actually remained tenants there, until someone stole my guitar. That was the last straw.
Take a listen to Shadow by Your Side below and follow Las Rosas here
5/11 – Montreal, QC – L’Esco
5/13 – Windsor, ON – Phog Lounge
5/14 – Cincinnati, OH -MOTR Pub
5/15 – Detroit, MI – Marble Bar
5/18 – Chicago, IL – Subterranean Downstairs
5/20 – Ft. Collins, CO – Surfside 7
5/21 – Denver, CO – Larimer Lounge
5/22 – Salt Lake City, UT – Metro
5/24 – Boise, ID – Neurolux
5/27 – Portland, OR – Liquor Store
5/29 – San Francisco, CA – Brick & Mortar
5/31 – San Diego, CA – Blonde Bar
6/1 – Los Angeles, CA – The Echo
6/3 – El Paso, TX – Monarch
6/5 – Dallas, TX – City Tavern
6/6 – Austin, TX – Hotel Vegas
6/8 – New Orleans, LA – Hi Ho Lounge
6/11 – St Petersburg, FL – Paper Crane
6/13 – Miami, FL – Las Rosas
6/14 – Jacksonville, FL – (w/ La Luz)
6/15 – Athens, GA – Georgia Theatre (Rooftop)
6/16 – Nashville, TN – 5 Spot
6/17 – Raleigh, NC – Slims
6/19 – Asheville, NC – Lazy Diamond
6/20 – Richmond, VA – Strange Matter
6/23 – Brooklyn, NY – Alphaville