“Fallout Shelter” by 102 Mangos is a refreshing take on the Willow-style alt-rock of this age. This artist swaps the quasi-pop-punk, squashed production style of today’s sound for a smoother, more melodious, slightly more organic atmosphere. When someone said “indie sleaze” was coming back in style fast, this is what they meant. We’re getting effortlessly good songwriting, a bedroom pop ambiance, a relaxed/organic vocal timbre, and gobs of unquestionable coolness. 102 Mangos is the future of rock. Be prepared to hear more music like this popping into the mainstream.
The song begins with an angsty set of arpeggiated guitar chords and a casually hummed melody. As the lyrical content trickles in, the words are indiscernible but played off with an infectious melody. The sectionality is a bit ambiguous until we get to the chorus, at which point, it’s impossible to deny how delectable this song truly is. As the singer cries, “We’re hanging on the edge / We’re falling out again,” the instrumentation deepens and the chords take on this bittersweet, sentimental feeling. The melody is so simply enjoyable it’s hard not to sing along. Some coarse autotune ornaments the vocals in this perfectly unpretentious way–it’s hard to even explain the effect it has because it’s so nuanced, but it fits the sound so well.
The rest of the song creates interest by changing up the vocal lines and adding/subtracting instrumentation here and there. Sometimes the bass is left to carry the track, and sometimes a guitar solos through the mix. All of this seamlessly connects different sections and allows the song to come to a satisfying conclusion at just below the three-minute mark. It’s short. It’s sweet. It leaves you wanting nothing more than to listen to another 102 Mangos song.
Written by Alyce Lindberg
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