Dawes: Truth Back Under the Knife

On paper, there’s no reason I should like Dawes. They have A) a strong vein of Southern rock/Laurel Canyon sound running through their songs and B) a very earnest songwriter. But music doesn’t take place on paper, and Dawes’ music just works. A key element to the succes of Dawes’ sound is Taylor Goldsmith’s strong, open voice that bursts with heart. And while serving the lyrics, the music itself does not sacrifice melody or rhythm to do so.

I’m hoping to see Dawes when they come to Cleveland in support of Cory Chisel & the Wandering Sons on February, 18. They’ll be playing the Tavern inside the Beacland Ballroom.

Dawes – When My Time Comes (Daytrotter session)

Dawes – Love Is All I Am (Daytrotter session)

Dawes on MySpace

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Andrew Bird: Andrew Bird’s Bowl of Fire

I’ll admit it: I like Andrew Bird himself and find his creativity and talent inspiring, but I’ve had a hard time getting into Andrew Bird’s music. When I tried to just listen to him, I found myself liking “Imitosis”, “Heretics”… and that was about it. When I actually watched him play, by way of videos of live performances, I fell in love with a few more songs, like “Anonanimal” and the marvellously ungainly-titled “A Nervous Tic Motion of the Head to the Left”. While all the songs weren’t clicking with me, the ones that did click, clicked hard.

I previewed samples from a few of his albums and just wasn’t finding a whole album I felt like dropping a dime on… until I hit those first two Bowl of Fire albums – Thrills and Oh! The Grandeur – then it was Hot, damn! (On the third and final Bowl of Fire album, The Swimming Hour, switched gears, delving into a variety of pop styles. Bird refers to it as his “jukebox album”. ) If, like me just a week or so ago, you … Continue reading