Local Natives + Thao & The Get Down Stay Down | Track reviews
Rising indie sticks to the script, while a songwriter speaks up for women locked up.
Published: March 21, 2013
Local Natives are quickly climbing the tiers of all those festival lineups that read like an eye chart. But playing to bigger audiences means broadening your sound, so the L.A. group enlisted the National’s Aaron Dessner to help out with new album Hummingbird. “Heavy Feet” finds the band finessing the arc of its set, and the song’s slow build mirrors its growing fan base. Caressing verses glide over a tumbling drumbeat, sustaining just enough tension. Yet there’s something suspect about this band. Its pedigree is too perfect, as if it read a how-to manual written by an industry vet like Jimmy Iovine. Wistful lyrics? Check. Guy with mustache? Check. Lumineers-like handclaps? Yep, Local Natives have those, too. It’s all perfectly crafted into soaring choruses with shimmering guitars and sustained keys, guided by infallible harmonies. And it’s lovely, as those things would suggest. Maybe the formula is foolproof after all.
Local Natives play the Vic Theatre Thursday 21.