SoCal indie outfit The Lagoons unveil their brand-new single, “Heard It On The Radio,” a song about the rift created by the flow of information in today’s world.
Talking about the song, The Lagoons explain, “We remember growing up listening to the music our parents listened to when they were growing up in the 60s and 70s and how a lot of the music back then was extremely reflective of what was happening in the world at that time.”
Going on, they add, “Lately, it seems like every time we turn on the television or radio there is another crazy news event happening in the world that creates this polarizing debate across our society. Everyone has an opinion about everything nowadays but it’s hard to tell how much change is actually happening in the world from these conversations. Pay attention to what is happening in the world. Try to have an open mind on things you may not agree with at first and find ways to educate yourself and speak out on behalf of those issues to create positive change in the world.”
Comprising brothers Joey Selan and Ryan Selan—both trained in jazz and playing multiple instruments—The Lagoons recorded “Heard It On The Radio” in their sister’s childhood bedroom, followed by entering a studio in L.A., where a drummer added percussion.
The duo’s spectacular arrival occurred in 2016, when they released “California,” amassing more than 50 million streams, followed by headlining tours from L.A. to NYC. Last year, they released their debut album, Midnight Afternoon, collecting millions of streams. So far this year, The Lagoons have released a series of singles, including “Snowy Mountain,” “Daybreak,” and “Dial Tones (Voicemail).
“Heard It On The Radio” opens on washes of low-slung indie-rock colors flavored with tinges of psychedelic new wave, imbuing the tune with retro savors. Lush, dreamy vocals infuse the lyrics with misty residual textures. The feel and flow of the harmonics conjure up memories of R.E.M. covering Depeche Mode, echoing shimmers of alluring sonic surfaces.
Because of the song’s creamy-dreamy kaleidoscopic ambiance, The Young Folks spoke with The Lagoons to find out more about their delicious, distinctive sound.
What inspired your new single, “Heard It On The Radio?”
This song was inspired by all the noise and commotion from the media over the last few years through the Trump era. It’s hard to avoid the news and what’s going on around the world today and we wanted to reflect that sense of madness through this song.
What’s the story behind the name The Lagoons?
We’re from LA and we would jokingly call each other “goon” growing up. When we put together “LA” and “goon” we got the name “Lagoon.” It also has a bit of a double meaning because a lot of our music has that laid-back, surf rock vibe so the name “The Lagoons” fits that water, beachy vibe.
When did the two of you decide to start making music together?
Well, we’re brothers so we grew up playing music together. We both were part of our school jazz band growing up. We then self-taught ourselves piano and guitar and began jamming and writing together for fun. It was a way of bonding for us. We started taking it more seriously in our early 20s when we realized we had a pretty long list of songs ready to be recorded.
Which musicians/singers influenced you the most?
We draw a lot of influence from the classic rock era. Some of our favorite bands include Steely Dan, Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, and Beach Boys. That whole 1970s Laurel Canyon era is very influential to us. Some contemporaries we look up to as well include Mark Ronson, Pharrell, Dave Matthews Band, Radiohead, and RHCP to name a few.
Which artists in your opinion are killing it right now?
We really love the new collaboration between Bruno Mars and Anderson.Paak on their ‘Silk Sonic’ project. It’s refreshing to hear the retro-sounding songs they’re putting out with an incredible live band stacked with amazing musicians.
What inspires your writing? Do you draw inspiration from poems, music, TV, or other media?
We draw inspiration from all over. A lot of our songs come from personal life experiences and current events happening in the world.
What can you share about your writing process?
We write, record, and produce everything just the two of us in our home studio in Los Angeles. We’re both multi-instrumentalists so all the instruments you hear on our recordings for the most part are recorded by either one of us. Our writing process is extremely collaborative.