LA-based producer Shallou releases his new EP The Long Way Home. The EP, released via FADER Label, sees Shallou open up about his OCD diagnosis and overcoming the heaviness his anxiety and depression once weighed.
Providing a safe space for him to escape into, The Long Way Home gave Shallou even more than it now gives us. A place to direct his fears and anxieties of impending doom, the creation of the EP offered him the time to nurture his own mind and sees him reveal the struggles of the past year or so. With the EP soon becoming a collection of songs to represent these struggles, Shallou tells us: "The isolation of quarantine and the slow degradation of society and nature have me reaching out for this sort of ‘holy land’, a place where I can relax and just feel safe again. Through all this, I think the Long Way Home EP bears a hopeful theme of getting through the worst times."
Opening with "Corners", a track written in March 2021, the single sees the rediscovery of hope. A warming, kaleidoscopic collection of sound produces a vibrant ray of light shining into the world, an open invitation to step into the world of Shallou – an invitation that should be immediately accepted if you know what's good for you.With "High Tides" hypnotic waves of electronic pulses and iridescent additions, its house-infused textures effuse the notions of finally feeling free again. Whilst "Heartaches" further continues his heady house melodies, on "Here", Shallou gives listeners the chance to dip their minds into the warm waters of his unique indie-tronica. A reflective piece of soothing electronic graced with majestic vocals, "Here" is an exhibition of atmospheric bliss.
Closing The Long Way Home with the sleek piano-ballad "Pacifica", Shallou appears to make a vow to himself and his mental health to always be there, ready to cushion the fall if he slips back into the darkness for a slight moment. Its powerful sonics present a moment of joy and an overcoming sense of achievement of being on the other side, glancing back to reflect on his strength. His heavy sigh and added sounds of birds tweeting gift a moment of renewal, a few seconds of realisation that the future does look bright when you're still in it.
"The EP began as an ode to this town near San Francisco that I visited called Pacifica, where I felt true inner peace and was able to let the past few years of my career fully wash over me. The town reminds me of my childhood trips to southern Maine; the ocean laps against large rock formations and the town feels sleepy and calm." he explains. "During COVID, I had some extremely difficult mental struggles – I was diagnosed with OCD and anxiety/depression consumed everything. In 2021, working on the new music represented a safe place I could escape to just like Pacifica, just like home."
The Long Way Home is a concoction of melodic tracks built with glimmering hooks and signature vocals that craft a five-track body of work with ease. A heartfelt EP built upon a foundation of personal endurance and overcoming mental obstacles, The Long Way Home is a beautiful insight into the mind of an incredible creative.
The Long Way Home is out now via FADER Label.