Local Natives know how to properly channel the primal energy of Fleetwood’s Mac “Tusk.”
The Los Angeles-based indie rock band recently covered “Tusk” as part of Spotify’s “Music Happens Here” video series, which highlights how “local culture has inspired music throughout history” and kicks off with an inaugural 26-minute episode about Los Angeles.
“To say Fleetwood Mac has a huge influence on our music is a bit of an understatement,” the band wrote March 21 on their Facebook page. “As part of a new Spotify series called Music Happens Here, we covered Tusk in the same room, same studio as Fleetwood Mac covered it.”
I was elated the moment I read those words on Local Natives’ Facebook page. If you’re a Fleetwood Mac fan, then it’s not stretch to like Local Natives’ music, which features lush harmonies, adventurous percussion and multiple singer-songwriters.
This stunning seven-track album from the self-proclaimed “prog-bluegrass locomotive” fueled by Billy Kirst (vocals and guitar), Kyle Rhodes (vocals and mandolin), Jordan Adema (violin) and Ryan Shea (bass and vocals) pulls listeners along a personal journey while they ride in “psych-folk” boxcars filled with frustration, nostalgia, love and self-discovery.
The journey begins with the energetic title track and captures the frustration of living in an era when “…instead of seeing everyone as sisters and brothers/They started pointing fingers at one another.”
While the lyrics brilliantly capture anger and blame, the band’s acoustic guitar, violin, mandolin and bass harmoniously meld together and instrumentally portray a sense of hope for the future.
That hope is carried through to “Madison,” which features Kirst’s and Rhodes’ lush harmonies coupled with nostalgic lyrics and the fast-paced sonic partnership of Adema’s violin and Rhodes’ mandolin.
Dawes is quickly becoming one of our favorite bands.
Brian and I made the 90-minute trek to Kalamazoo, Mich. last night to see the Los Angeles-based indie folk rock quartet play two powerhouse sets at the State Theatre for about 1,000 fans.
Called “An Evening with Dawes,” the 2.5-hour show served as the band’s first headlining performance at Kalamazoo’s historic 90-year-old theater and included 25 songs that spanned their eight-year career.
The show is part of Dawes’ current 51-city North American tour and most recent album, “We’re All Gonna Die,” which came out in September.