Back in the 1980’s a band appeared from the growing alternative Country scene to lay down a marker to many acts that would follow. The Silos owed much to the creative vision of Walter Salas-Humara; musician, songwriter and visual artist. With official releases that tip into double figures, the Silos made challenging and vibrant music that energised the roots rock genre and led to some renown for the band over the years.
Jumping to 2014, we find a stripped-down solo recording from Walter which is a stark contrast to the last Silos recording, the great Florizona, released in 2011. Only Jason Victor on guitar survives from that Silos band, and Walter uses a new group of musicians to bring different colours and textures to the Silos’ energy of the past. The ten songs here, clocking in just over the 40 minute mark, show that quality and intensity remain a part of Walter’s music, at once familiar and on repeated listening, revealing hidden depths.
With song titles such as Counting on You; What We Can Bring; Satellite and Uncomplicated, we get the impression of an artist reaching out across the void in our collective lives to touch some common bond and emotion. The need for understanding and taking joy in simple pleasures is covered in Hoping for a Comeback, and the song Way Too Heavy to Float seems to hint at a gentle faith in accepting things in life as they unfold.
The song arrangements are very subtle and include some dreamy keyboard and synth melodies from Ryan Williams. There is still room for a few wonderful guitar breaks and the vocal delivery has never held such raw and restrained sorrow.
This is a vibrant and worthy artist and Curve and Shake deserves a place in any music collection.