Sunday, June 20, 2010

Dawes - Boulder, CO, 06/19/2010

Saturday night brought Southern California band Dawes to Boulder's Fox Theatre for the first time. As lead singer Taylor Goldsmith noted, he played Boulder a number of years back with his former alternative rock band Simon Dawes, who opened for Band of Horses at the Fox. Having heard some of the old Simon Dawes material, I'm quite pleased with the direction the current band's material has taken, as their debut release last October is still in regular ipod rotation for me.

The crowd numbered about like one would expect for a buzz band on their first time through town, with maybe 150-200 people in attendance. As impressed as I am with this band right now, I have to say that thoughts definitely ran through my mind about how 5 or 10 years down the line I expect to be telling people about how I saw Dawes before they got huge.

Besides playing most of the tracks from their album North Hills, the band played a number of new songs that I look forward to hearing on a new release in the near future. Additionally, one of the best surprises of the night came with the band's cover of John Prine's "Pretty Good." They recounted that they played the song recently at Bonnaroo, where Prine also played, and were honored to have heard that he told an interviewer that he was glad to hear a new band {i.e. Dawes} was playing the song. I half expected they were going to say they got to hang out with him at the festival, but they were simply excited that he had even heard their name. Goldsmith was equally appreciative to the crowd throughout the night, expressing a good deal of gratitude for the enthusiastic audience that seemed to be made up about half of people singing along and half of people whose friends brought them, and who were soon to become new converts to the band.

I'll not try to hide the fact that, no matter how much I love their entire album, I was most anticipating "That Western Skyline" and "When My Time Comes," the latter of which initially drew me to the band. Neither song disappointed live, and "When My Time Comes" might have even exceeded my expectations, ending with Goldsmith initiating a singalong from the audience. They could have played the song a second time and I wouldn't have complained one bit.

If you are looking for new material from Dawes, you can get a live show download from a Daytrotter concert last fall at this link. On that download you'll find a couple of new songs as well as a number of other good recordings of songs from North Hills.

All in all, Dawes is a young band with barely more than one album's worth of material, but their incessant touring over the last year has made them into an extremely well-seasoned act that packs quite a punch in their live show. They have no doubt benefited from that experience, and they look to be doing all the right things to become a long-term fixture on the national circuit.

No comments: