I’ve always kind of felt like there’s a good chance that a truly creative musician has at least one side project. Mantra Love’s Derek Silva is a guy who seems to have tons of creative juices flowing, so it shouldn’t come as a shock that he has a pretty intriguing side project called Teenage Wildlife. In it, Silva, alongside friend and collaborator Nader Ibrahim, create a sound that’s part chillwave and part electro dream pop that’s pretty hard not to like. Found exclusively here, the five song EP is definitely relaxed enough to enjoy casually and catchy enough to get down to.
Opening with the track “You,” the catchy beat and tremolo-induced guitar coupled with chill vocals should immediately grab your attention. The pace of the song is just snappy enough to hold your ears before these little ditties on guitar slink in to really place their hooks deep within your insides. Synths dance atop the track and it’s just a fun and relaxed vibe that serves as a great start. The second track, “All The Time,” has these intriguing Tame Impala-esque moments, but is primarily a chill jam that meanders along like an amphibious creature chilling in the shade. However, the third song, “Just Yesterday,” takes those chill vibes and really sprinkles in these dream pop elements alongside some alt guitar that you shouldn’t turn away from. Possibly closer to the works of nineties Britpop acts like Ride and Charlatans UK, the song definitely echoes that era without really copying it in any way.
The fourth song, “One Of Those Days,” is possibly one of the most engaging of the five, feeling personal and upbeat at the same time. The catchy beat and tongue in cheek lyrics should grab hold of anyone who hears them, while airy backing vocals roll in to put the listener at ease. Kind of like the Blur song “Country Sad Ballad Man,” these two definitely channel their inner Damon Albarn and Beck here while they never really steal any of either’s originality in the process. Closing out the EP is the catchy and Spanish influenced jam of “Lost Till The End.” While the track reminded me of a modern day Herb Alpert mixed with Spoon, the Spanish sounding acoustics mixed with trippy garage rock guitar and a chill beat offer up a reclined jam that you should fall in love with.
There’s a lot happening here on the five tracks, feeling like these two are feeding off of each other’s vibes and just making fun, chill jams. You can stream Teenage Wildlife at all of the usual places when it’s released on Friday, August 11. While the duo doesn’t have any live dates planned yet, it’s definitely something we should all be looking forward to.