In October 2017, “Feel It Still” by Portugal. The Man hit number four on the Billboard Hot 100. It was virtually impossible to go into public without hearing it. Whether you were listening to the car radio or in a local Shaws, that infectious guitar riff was inescapable. Some people attribute the success of “Feel It Still” to a rise in the popularity of alternative music; others call it a rare occurrence caused by the fact that the song was just too fun to stay on the sidelines.
What so many people who love “Feel It Still” don’t realize is that Portugal. The Man is a lot bigger than that one song. They have eight albums and a career that started in 2006 with their debut album Waiter: You Vultures! Most of their music isn’t like “Feel It Still.” Leading up to their most recent album Woodstock, their sound was mellower, darker, and packed with emotion.
Portugal. The Man is an important band in my life. My sister exposed me to them before I started discovering more alternative music for myself, and I fell in love. They were one of my first concerts, and the first time I ever attended the House of Blues which has since become my favorite venue. Picking specific songs to feature for this article proved incredibly difficult, so if you like what you hear, seek them out, and you will find so much more. My favorite Portugal. The Man song is probably “So American” off of their sixth album: In the Mountain In the Cloud. It makes you feel like a hippie taking to the streets in the sixties, protesting to a great soundtrack. Another song that is essential to checkout is “Hip Hop Kids” off of their seventh, and more rock-infused album, Evil Friends. “Hip Hop Kids” is the kind of song that you rock your head in to your room while screaming along to the lyrics. The last song that you should listen to in order to develop your understanding of Portugal. The Man is “Tidal Wave” off of their most recent album. Currently at number 15 on the billboard alternative chart, “Tidal Wave” is more electric than the rest of their songs, but revisits the mellower tone that the band executes so well.