Brian Harrington

"The multi-hyphenate hipster is an entrepreneur, film producer, actor, and political consultant."

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Local Natives | Middle Kids | Observatory OC | Santa Ana, CA

I ended up at the Local Natives/Middle Kids show at the Observatory in Santa Ana, CA last night courtesy of some great friends and their out of town boss passing along the tickets.

It was the third to last stop for the Spiral Choir tour. Local Natives was born out of Tesoro High School in Orange County and now calls Silverlake in Los Angeles home.

Don’t tell LA, but we’re actually from Orange County.
— Taylor Rice (To huge applause from the Santa Ana crowd)
Local-Natives-Tour-.jpg

Observatory OC

Pros

Great bathrooms. Downstairs and upstairs did not have a line either time I went and when there were lines they were flowing well.

Cons

Hard to hear the lyrics. I don’t know why this plagues so many of these cool small venues but for whatever reason the mixing puts a ton more emphasis on being loud instead of being able to really hear the artists if you don’t know the songs.

To me this is seriously a barrier to entry for finding new artists to listen to. I think if venues did a better job of mixing so you could hear the content of the lyrics that it would be easier for bands to develop casual fans out of the people in the crowd that are at the venue with friends without knowing the artist ahead of time.

What Others Are Saying

Vanyaland:

“We can always count on Local Natives for two things: Sweet indie jams and inspired touring packages. We’ll be getting the former this March, which is reason enough to get excited, but the the latter presents itself once again today (February 13) as the Los Angeles band has detailed a May and June North American tour with Australia’s Middle Kids, a tour that really showcases some incredible songwriting.”

Pitchfork:

Local Natives have announced a new album called Violet Street, which is slated for release April 26 via Loma Vista Recordings. The announcement arrives with their new single “When Am I Gonna Lose You.” Kate Mara stars in the accompanying music video. Check out the stylish, Van Alpert-directed visual below. Plus, watch the band’s music video for their other new single “Café Amarillo.”

Violet Street is the follow-up to Local Natives’ 2016 LP Sunlit Youth. The new album is produced by Shawn Everett, who recently earned a 2019 Grammy Award for Album of the Year for his contributions to Kacey Musgraves’ Golden Hour.

Comparisons

I don’t know if others will agree with these comparisons from a musical perspective but based purely off the vibe of the crowd and the nature of the Silverlake/Orange County crossover I think future openers for Local Natives should include Lone Kodiak out of Silverlake and Orange County native now Nashville based singer/songwriter Rocko Beall.

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