angels & airwaves: "Chasing Shadows" EP review

Angels & Airwaves are one of those bands that nailed it JUST right in the beginning but somehow couldn't retain that same spark that inspired their first work to further progress not just their sound but as musicians in general.  The sole remaining member of AvA is former Blink-182 vocalist/guitarist Tom DeLonge.  Much of the bands past work leading up to 2014's "The Dream Walker" seemed like re-hashed stuff we've heard from Delonge already.  When musician extraordinaire Ilan Rubin joined AvA in 2011, a breath of fresh air was introduced to AvA's tired formula.  "The Dream Walker" showcased a band with potential to progress as long as Delonge lessened his artistic grip.

The past few years Tom DeLonge has expanded his sights on accompanying books and various media with music to compliment these projects.  2014's "Dream Walker" and 2015's "Of Nightmares EP" are examples of this.  While ambitious, the music suffered as a result of tying the music to DeLonge's overly ambitious multi-media projects.  Not everyone is gonna be invested in these projects and therefore might not understand the lyrical content of the music.  It seems as though this trend follows on 2016's "Chasing Shadows EP".

Composed of 4 songs, I can't help but hear Tom DeLonge continue to dip into his love of Pink Floyd, Radiohead and U2 with no regard to progressing as a lyricist and as a musician.  Each of these 4 songs have the word "fucking" in them at least 6-7 times.  The only redeeming quality of this EP is Ilan Rubin's INSANE drumming and various instrumentation that make it bearable to listen to in regards to the music.  DeLonge on the other hand reverts back to familiar melodic structure while his lyrics are in reference to a novel of his, you guessed it, called "Chasing Shadows" written by DeLonge and AJ Hartley.  Maybe it's because I don't read any of DeLonge's various comics and books nor any of his short films and feature films, but I feel no connection to what he's conveying with his lyrics.  

If you're a fan of Angels & Airwaves you might enjoy it for a listen or two before reverting back to "We Don't Need to Whisper".  While Ilan Rubin's contributions are a highlight for me, outside of that I find hardly any enjoyment from the "Chasing Shadows EP".  

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