LIVE: Local Natives Unveil New Material For KCRW (12/14/12)
By Bailey Pennick; Photos by Jeremiah Garcia on December 18, 2012
KCRW's Berkeley Street Sessions at Apogee Studios
Santa Monica, California
December 14, 2012
Listening to KCRW’s programming tent-pole Morning Becomes Eclectic is an incredibly smooth and melodic experience that can immediately improve your workday: Jason Bentley’s voice resonates deeply with the conflicted qualities of being in-the-biz and just being a total fan, while the bands adorably answer questions about their past and perform their hits.
Watching Silver Lake’s own Local Natives step onto the Apogee Studios stage for a Berkeley Street Session, the tiny audience was reminded why these recorded events are important; there is nothing that matches the energy and power of a great live performance. Surrounded by draped curtains and worn rugs, the indie-folk quartet which consists of Taylor Rice, Kelcey Ayer, Ryan Hahn and Matt Frazier jumped right into a fluid and entrancing three-set show that featured eight songs from their upcoming sophomore album Hummingbird.
The first two sets—full of entirely new songs—seemed to push Local Natives into a more brooding and melancholy soundscape (“Columbia”, “Three Months”) than seen on their debut Gorilla Manor (2009), but their confidence in the material shined through completely.
The group knew the new tracks from the stripped down follow-up backwards and forwards from the single “Breakers” to seemingly deeper cuts like “Ceilings” and “Black Spot” which got the crowd buzzing and yearning for the new album to be available sooner.
Even during their brief interview with Bentley, the boys were humble and excited about their warm west coast homecoming after recording both of their albums in New York. This refreshing enthusiasm and kindness was tested (and triumphed) after all of the power went out on stage leaving only the drums making a substantial amount of noise for a few minutes.
The group joked about cutting instruments that they didn’t need (including the KORG) until everything was restored besides their monitors. Before finally jumping into the delayed third set—which included a superb “Who Knows, Who Cares”—the boys tried to erase our memories by pantomiming the Men In Black “Neuralyzer” but they had no such luck.
We’re glad it didn’t work because it showed us how delightful and real they are.
Local Natives set list
You and I
Who Knows Who Cares
To listen to Local Natives’ Friday performance and their lovely radio banter, tune into Morning Becomes Eclectic on January 11, 2013.