Songwriter/musician Andrew Landry and producer/instrumentalist Matthew Huber comprise the collaborative project Ilustrada. Friends before collaborating musically, the pair’s musical project came to life when Andrew approached Matthew with a bunch of demos he had been working on. From there, they began a full-scale studio effort, culminating in the release of their debut record on July 28th, which is streaming in full below.
In their own words, Ilustrada’s style blends “classic 60’s and 70’s style lyricism and song structures with bright, dynamic guitar compositions and clean, washy synth arrangements,” with folk roots that “show in the layered vocal harmonization, but the sound has a strong, traditional pop backbone.” One of the album’s highlights, the opener “Make Me Make You Happy”, begins with ghostly croons and a quaint piano melody. It gradually develops, with soaring vocals and shimmering guitars — around 02:30 becoming a pleasantly bouncy and soaring rocker. Added intensity develops over the next several minutes, notably playful psych-friendly guitar tones around 04:40. “Make Me Make You Happy” is a strong track that showcases the duo’s eclectic capabilities well. “Belladonna”, with its acoustical-leaning laid-back nature, and soaring around 03:40, is another surefire highlight with vibes reminiscent of The War on Drugs.