Taylor Goldsmith's contemplations of eternity may be a bit precocious for someone in his early twenties. But he and his similarly youthful bandmates in Dawes suggest they have old souls, or at least souls whose vintage tastes place them squarely in the hills and canyons around late-'60s L.A., on debut album North Hills. Much of North Hills has that hazy, ambling Laurel Canyon groove associated with folks like Jackson Browne and Crosby, Stills & Nash, Goldsmith essentially cloaking himself in that sun-dappled vibe as he tries to make sense of the world with lines like "Anyone that's making anything new only breaks something else." While certainly evoking a specific time and place, Dawes doesn't feel derivative, more like a band grafting something new onto old roots. Opening are a pair of bands with their own takes on Americana. With family ties to Minnesota's Iron Range, Appleton, Wisconsin-based Cory Chisel and his Wandering Sons juggle folkie introspection and edgy rock on last fall's Death Won't Send a Letter. Hustler's Son, the solo debut of Rilo Kiley/Bright Eyes drummer Jason Boesel, is woven from an even stronger country-rock thread.
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