First heard of Local Natives was from their performances at SXSW 2009; unfortunately, they were a band that I missed. So I made sure to catch the 2010 NPR showcase at The Parish (an intimate, acoustically brilliant, downtown venue) and loved them.
I loved that the band members switched which position they held within the band – which instruments they played, who sang which part and when. Their harmonies had a way of reminding me of when Zach Gump and I first understood the significance of his 2nd Tenor and my 1st, as ninth graders in high school choir.
When they came back I was still head-over-heels for their first album, Gorilla Manor, but beginning to wonder what was next. This time they played at Stubbs (favorite Austin venue; think amphitheatre) in 2011. As most bands, they professed their affections for Austin but said they wouldn’t be able to come back until they had a new album.
Their promise colored my expectations for their next visit. In December 2012, they played Austin Music Hall with The National. Halfway through the show, when I had not heard anything new, Taylor actually apologized for no new album but they couldn’t pass up a chance to play with The National. I wouldn’t pass up the opportunity either.
Their having played some new songs at that show, gave me hope that we might see an entire album by summer at the latest. No news came and as time passed by my hope did too. Then in fall of 2012, just when I was about to give up on a new album altogether, I heard one was on its way.
Hummingbird is due out January 29 – NPR blesses us with 6 songs & an interview: http://www.npr.org/event/music/168653152/local-natives-in-concert