Bakersfield’s own indie-pop band Hate Drugs’ newest single “Take a Look Around,” is a feel-good song that reels you in with beautiful vocals, funky bass, and exciting drum-beat.
Listening to Hate Drugs’ earlier records, you can hear their sound traverse through genres and moods. However, all of their songs have a certain quality that makes you think ‘yes, this is a Hate Drugs song.’ This single is no different. Although it is more of a pop-rock feel, it’s extremely telling of a typical Hate Drugs recipe. Some fun synth provided by Josiah Caploe on keys, paired with Norman Lee’s striking rhythm guitar, all backed by alluring bass riffs from John Irvin and unpredictable and catchy drum patterns by Adrian Diaz are brought together to a harmonious blend to highlight David Caploe’s melodious vocals and create the amazing sound we know as Hate Drugs.
Right from the start of the single, we are introduced to a summertime-esque guitar progression that builds into a driving tempo to set the tone. When Caploe sings the first verse, we are presented with his soothing vocals that put us in a state of elatedness. The walk down transition into the pre-chorus really plays with the melody but keeps the lighthearted vibe of the song, and into the chorus. The chorus is extremely catchy with a backbeat and groovy bass licks that will leave your head bopping to the rest of the song.
One of my favorite parts of this single is where we can hear a shift from the fun bounce of the chorus to a richer, dreamy 80s undertone of the bridge. The heavy modulation of the synth keyboard accompanied by deep toms overcome you in a wave of nostalgia. The 20-second key and drum solo add a certain depth to the typical pop formula this song seemed to be following.
Finding out that this single was written five years ago by the group emphasizes how they have developed and yet stayed true to their classic sound.
Take a listen to “Take a Look Around” below: