Jam Central Station 11.17.12: The Lumineers – The Lumineers
Welcome again to another weekend edition of Jam Central Station. I’m sticking with the CD reviews right now. There’s been quite a few good albums that have come out over the past few months that haven’t been mentioned here, and I’m trying to remedy that. At the top of the list is this one, the self titled debut from The Lumineers!
It’s been pretty clear through this column over the past year that I’ve been digging the new folk movement. What started with The Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons has expanded to dozens of bands with a variety of styles. Each is bringing something new and unique to the scene. One band that has been on the rise over the past six months has been The Lumineers. Using simple song structures and strong live performances, the band has gone from relative unknown to national headliners in just a few months. I wanted to take a minute to look at the album that made that happen.
Their self-titled debut album was just released back in April, but since that time the band has done a lot to make a name for themselves. The obvious reason is the strength of the album. The band put together 11 songs and, in just under 45 minutes, you’re able to see what makes these guys special. The songs aren’t intricate or complicated, but they’re put together very well. “Flowers In Your Hair” kicks off the album. The song is relatively stripped down, moving from just guitar and vocals to full band and, at under 2 minutes, is basically just an intro for the album. “Classy Girls” feels like it was recorded live in a bar, which fits well since it’s a song about picking up a girl at a bar. The lyrics are definitely there to tell a story on this album, and this is a good example of that. “Submarines” is a fun bouncy type of song. This one isn’t telling a story, but it’s a fun song that could easily have audiences moving and singing along. The stripped down one-note-at-a-time piano and very limited drums make for a unique song that highlights a different style from the band. They move toward a more melancholy sound for “Dead Sea,” a song again driven by sparse instrumentation. The band does a lot with a little, and this is another exaple of it. While there are some drums and cello on the song, it could easily be done with just vocals and guitar.
The band picks things up again with “Ho Hey.” The song has great harmonies and it moves towards a pretty uplifting style and tempo. It’s also a song that’s one of the most “produced” in that it doesn’t sound like it was recorded in a live studio setting. There’s some good layering and effects that make it work. “Slow it Down” reminds me of a Head and the Heart song, very quiet and again with only minimal instrumentation. The band does a very good job at introspective lyrics and vocals, conveying emotion through silence and selective use of instruments. This style continues on “Stubborn Love,” with melodic strings and guitar underlying the vocals. Just while they were getting to the point of the songs running a bit together they change things up again with “Big Parade,” which starts out with a hand-clapping rhythm before heading into the song. The song is similar to “Flowers In Your Hair” in that it starts almost as a solo song before moving into a full band tune.
“Charlie Boy” sounds like a throwback song. While many of the songs on the album pay respect to older styles of music, this one brings classic folk and Americana to the forefront. “Flapper Girl” starts out with a brighter tone, with a sparse but bright piano part and vocals before slowly adding other instruments. Other bands such as Dawes are doing similar things, but when coupled with the diversity of the rest of the album, this stands out instead of blending in. The album closes with “Morning Song,” another stylistic change for the band. It starts out sounding like it will be a bluesy rocker before slowing way down for the first verse. After that the distorted guitar and the drums kick back in again. There’s a sense of tension in the song, with it sounding like it needs to speed up before sliding back again. Like the rest of the album, it’s very well done and original.
While The Lumineers certainly borrow from their contemporaries, the way that they put their songs and this album together is unique. They know how to use silence or quiet to effectively fill the space in their songs instead of adding additional unnecessary layers. The lyrics are strong and the structuring of the songs give the band plenty of freedom to improvise live if they would choose. While the band may not be reinventing the wheel, they’re certainly adding a bit of unique flair to a familiar sound.
Floyd Fest announce lineup
In what I think is the first lineup announcement of the 2013 festival season, Floyd Festival announced their initial lineup and 2013 dates. The festival will take place in Floyd, VA on July 25-28. Artists already announced for the festival include the John Butler Trio, Yonder Mountain String Band, The Lumineers, Railroad Earth, Trampled by Turtles, Donavon Frankenreiter, Blitzen Trapper, and many others
Hangout announces dates
Hangout is back in 2013, and they announced their dates this week. They’ll return to Gulf Shores AL from May 17-19, 2013. Expect some sort of “pre-party” to be announced as well before the festival.
High Sierra announces dates
The High Sierra Music Festival will take place over July 4th next year. The event will run July 4-7, 2013 in Quincy
The 6th Annual DelFest will take place on May 23-26 in Cumberland, MD. Presale tickets are on sale already. Look for a lineup before general admission tickets go on sale on December 3.
Lotus announce tour
Lotus announced a run of dates that will take the band through the beginning of March. They’ll be heading out on the road and hitting much of the east coast, midwest, and parts of the south. Tour dates are already selling out, so don’t wait to get tickets.
November 30 Philadelphia, PA—Electric Factory
December 27 Chicago, IL—Riviera Theatre
December 28 Chicago, IL—Riviera Theatre
December 29 Millvale, PA—Mr. Small’s Theatre
December 30 Baltimore, MD—Rams Head Live
December 31 Baltimore, MD—Rams Head Live
January 24 Burlington, VT—Higher Ground
January 25 Boston, MA—House of Blues
January 26 New York, NY—Best Buy Theater
January 27- Brooklyn, NY—Knitting Factory
January 30 Syracuse, NY—The Westcott Theater
January 31 Cleveland, OH—Beachland Ballroom
February 1 Royal Oak, MI—Royal Oak Theatre
February 2 Columbus, OH—Newport Music Hall (co-bill with Keller Williams)
February 5 Grand Rapids, MI—The Intersection
February 6 Bloomington, IN—Jake’s
February 7 Milwaukee, WI—Turner Hall Ballroom
February 8 Madison, WI—Barrymore Theatre
February 9 Minneapolis, MN—Mill City Nights
February 12 Lincoln, NE—Bourbon Theatre
February 13 Fayetteville, AR—George’s Majestic Lounge
February 14 Oklahoma City, OK—Diamond Ballroom
February 15 Dallas, TX—Trees
February 16 Austin, TX—Stubb’s BBQ
February 19 Tallahassee, FL—The Moon
February 20 Tampa, FL—The Ritz Ybor
February 21 Orlando, FL—Beacham Theater
February 22 Ft. Lauderdale, FL—Culture Room
February 23 Jacksonville, FL—Freebird Live
February 26 Wilmington, NC—Brooklyn Performing Arts Center
February 27 Carrboro, NC—Cat’s Cradle
February 28 Asheville, NC—Orange Peel
March 1 Atlanta, GA—Terminal West
March 2 Atlanta, GA—Terminal West
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals on tour
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals are still out on the road supporting their most recent album. The group will be touring through February after a recent run of dates was announced.
January 10 St. Louis, MO—The Pageant
January 11 Cincinnati, OH—Taft Theatre
January 12 Indianapolis, IN—Egyptian Room at Old National Centre
January 13 Kalamazoo, MI—State Theatre
January 16 Louisville, KY—W.L. Lyones Brown Theatre
January 17 Royal Oak, MI—Royal Oak Music Theatre
January 18 Chicago, IL—Riviera Theatre
January 20 Milwaukee, WI—Pabst Theatre
January 22 Green Bay, WI—Meyer Theatre
January 25 Minneapolis, MN—First Avenue
February 8 Providece, RI—Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel
February 10 Canton, NY—St. Lawrence University
February 13 Jacksonville, FL—Florida Theatre
February 14 Charleston, SC—Music Farm
February 15 St. Petersurg, FL—Jannus Live
February 16 Miami Beach, FL—Fillmore Miami Beach at Jackie Gleason Theatre
February 17 Lake Buena Vista, FL—House of Blues
Strings & Sol
December 12-16, 2012
Dreams Tulum Resort & Spa
Yonder Mountain String Band will perform 3 shows, and Railroad Earth, Leftover Salmon, and The Infamous Stringdusters will each be performing 2 shows.
Warren Haynes Christmas Jam
December 15, 2012
US Cellular Civic Center
Performers include: Warren Haynes Band, String Cheese Incident, Blind Boys of Alabama, Sheryl Crow, Trombone Shorty, and many others.
December 16-19, 2012 (Bahamas)
December 19-23, 2012 (Jamaica)
Departing from Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Performers include: Pulp, Hot Chip, Yeasayer, Girl Talk, James Murphy, Sleigh Bells, and many others.
December 17-21, 2012
Dreams Tulum Resort & Spa
Umphrey’s McGee, The Disco Biscuits, and STS9 will each perform two shows. STS9 will also perform a special midnight set commemorating the beginning of the new Great Cycle of the Mayan Calendar.
January 7-12, 2013
Performers include: moe., Medeski, Martin, Scofield & Wood, Funky Meters, Galactic, Karl Denson’s Tiny Univers, Big Gigantic, Lettuce, ALO, Tea Leaf Green, Greensky Bluegrass, Hot Buttered Rum, and many others.
Island Exodus IV
January 16-20, 2013
Gov’t Mule will host the event and perform multiple sets. No word on other performers.
Panic En La Playa Dos
January 27-31, 2013
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
This event will be the return of Widespread Panic to the stage after a year-long hiatus. Tickets go on sale August 24.
Jam in the Sand
March 1-5, 2013
Breezes Grand Resort
Dark Star Orchestra’s first Jamaican event. This event will feature multiple DSO shows as well as three Keller Williams sets and other activities
March 21-24, 2012
Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park
Live Oaks, FL
Performers include: Peter Rowan, Keller and the Keels, Leftover Salmon, Donna the Buffalo, The Travelin’ McCoury’s, Elephant Revival, and many others.
March 21-24, 2012
April 12-14, 2013
April 19-21, 2013
Hangout Music Festival
May 17-19, 2013
Gulf Shores, AL
May 23-26, 2013
Governors Ball Music Festival
June 8-9, 2013
New York City, NY
High Sierra Music Festival
July 4-7, 2013
July 25-28, 2013
Performers include: The Lumineers, John Butler Trio, Yonder Mountain String Band, Railroad Earth, Trampled by Turtles, Blitzen Trapper, and many others.
Newport Folk Festival
July 27-28, 2013
Newport Jazz Festival
September 6-8, 2013
Austin City Limits
October 4-6, 2013
October 11-13, 2013