Published Apr 24, 2019Embracing a more arena-rock style, Local Natives have left behind the melancholic sounds of previous releases, Hummingbird and Gorilla Manor. Their fourth studio album, Violet Street, takes a more buoyant and positive approach than usual. Deferring away from minimal guitar licks and harmonizing multi-part vocals, their new breezy and open sound is more energetic than ever, creating music that continues to reflect where they are in their lives.
"Shy" is the gem off the record, though its sound is anything but what its title may suggest. It starts off with intensely fast drumming and Kelcey Ayer's soaring vocals. Fierce and loud brass takes over, building up to a triumphant finish, similar to Foals, who are known for thundering build-ups in their music. "Sky" and other tracks such as "Gulf Shores" have an Afro-pop-inspired style and it's all over Violet Street, making the experience feel dreamy and endless.
Mellow but still high energy, "Café Amarillo" is a foot-tapping showpiece with awe-inspiring crafted bass and again, lively drumming. In contrast, the record ends with the slower paced "Tap Dancer." It's a memorable and emotional tune, sombre in essence, but still has the spirit Local Natives project from the opening track. (Loma Vista)