Bold, introspective and nuanced are just a few words that come to mind when listening to Denver’s Blake Shimoda’s newest single, “Habits.” The captivating song is just a sneak peek into bigger things to come from the producer and songwriter. Fans of pop/R&B will be happy to know that along with this catchy tune, Shimoda will also be releasing his debut album, Waiting for Tomorrow on September 3, 2021.
Some say peer pressure is a bad thing, but for Shimoda, it seems to be the spark that started his career.
“I think if I go back far enough [in my musical career] all traces back to Guitar Hero. When I was in grade school all of my friends got into the video game and then they got me into it, then they wanted to play guitar so I got into playing guitar,” said Shimoda.
From then on, it has been a snowball of passion, experimentation and talent for the flourishing musician. Shimoda has dabbled in EDM, electro-pop and soft R&B throughout his career and released four singles in 2020. However, his newest album presents a noticeable shift from what a lot of his listeners have heard from him in the past.
“Up to this point, I’ve really just been experimenting with my music. In my previous work I was trying out different styles with my voice, my writing and my production to try and find a sound that feels unique while still being authentic to me. While there still is a lot of experimentation present on my album, it’s much more focused. In more than one way, this album is about me finding myself and being true to what I find.”
This stylistic change is evident in his newest single, “Habits.” Filled with warm, dreamy tones and almost conversational lyrics, the single is a great introduction to the rest of the album. This is the kind of song you will want to blast while driving through the mountains in Colorado, as every line is relatable and nostalgic. While the lyrics describe someone stuck in their ways, the song is fundamentally about change. This is evident in the line, “Every little change takes some getting used to, I ain’t ever getting over you”.
Shimoda experienced more than his fair share of change this last year. With the loss of a job, friends moving out of state and his mom getting sick, the pressure in his life was high. These abrupt changes led Shimoda to channel those frustrations into songwriting.
“A lot of the lines in the song are meant to highlight how toxic a high-pressure mentality can be. ‘Habits’ touches on a lot of different topics but overall it’s a song about trying to find a balance in life between being productive and living a life that’s actually worth living.”
Along with situations in his own life, his songwriting process is also an inspired event. Everyday life aids Shimoda in his composition. From phrases he hears on the streets, to lines in poetry, even to the color royal blue — his creativity stems from many sources. Additionally, the ever-changing inspiration behind his songwriting has kept him from falling into a pattern, keeping his music unique and fun for listeners.
Waiting for Tomorrow will not only be unique and fun but it will also show a new side of Blake Shimoda. Put together like a well-thought-out puzzle, this album is more than a collection of many singles — it tells a story all the way through.