There are few bands these days that can pull off concept albums. Even fewer that can manage the feat on their debut album with great success. Lord Huron’s debut album, Lonesome Dreams has managed to do both. A debut album that chronicles the tales of a lonesome cowboy traversing the west, the L.A.-based band’s debut is one of 2012’s strongest. Sure, these songs are about starry skies on prairie plains, but the sound that each and every song encompasses is a new sound of indie folk: cowboy dream folk.
In Time to Run, this lonesome cowboy is ready to skip town. “It’s time to run, they’ll string me up for all that I’ve done,” but not before he pays one last visit to his girl: ” I did it all for you, I hope you know the lengths I’ve gone through.” Songwriter and vocalist Ben Schneider said the band’s sound is influenced by movie soundtracks, which is why this tune sounds like it’s straight out of a western. The bad boy strolls into town, topples over the counter in a bar fight and has to flee but manages to plant one on his gal before disappearing into the sunset. But what’s more impressive is that at no point is this the least bit cheesy, which is due largely to the sound that Lord Huron has crafted, that perfectly suits their stellar songwriting.
The entire album features an assortment of organs and strings plus chanting, whistling and plenty of jangle. Yet each song soars through harmonies and choruses. If the Wild West is your cathedral, then this is your worship music. In the title track, Schneider describes the landscape of his dreams, “I land on an island coast where the only souls I see are ghosts. I run through the wooded isle, and chase the sunset mile after mile.” But the dream isn’t about this magical land, but about the freedom of being alone: the true tennet of a lonesome cowboy. “I’ve been dreaming again of a lonesome road. Where I’m lost and I’m on my own.” Sure, being lonely is not new to folk music. But the lonesome days in these songs are not sad or depressing, but exciting and freeing. Lord Huron has perfected the dreamy folk that perfectly captures desert sunsets and endless starry skies, viewed without a soul in sight for miles and miles.
On The Man Who Lives Forever, the track opens with a jangle and faint forest sounds, before opening with the ever-optimistic, “I said that we’re all going to die,” before continuing on with words that when sung, seem true: “but I’ll never believe it. I love this world
and I don’t want to leave it.” It seems Lord Huron could turn anything into a song, and it would not only be beautiful, but as every song sounds like its spoke with well-earned wisdom, we’d believe it to be true in a heartbeat.
The band is currently out on tour in support of Lonesome Dreams and it should be an amazing set to catch live. In fact, they’ll be at the Great Scott on Thursday and tickets are $10. ONLY TEN DOLLARS! No excuses, I better see you there!
Oct 09 Mercury Lounge New York, NY
Oct 11 Great Scott Allston, MA
Oct 12 Glasslands Gallery Brooklyn, NY
Oct 13 Mohawk Place Buffalo, NY
Oct 15 Schubas Chicago, IL
Oct 16 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN
Oct 18 Larimer Lounge Denver, CO
Oct 19 Kilby Court Salt Lake City, UT
Oct 20 Neurolux Boise, ID
Oct 21 Barboza Seattle, WA
Oct 22 Doug Fir Lounge Portland, OR
Oct 24 The Independent San Francisco, CA
Nov 01 Casbah San Diego, CA
Nov 02 The Echo Los Angeles, CA