Saturday, June 22, 2013

Dawes at Terminal 5

Salvaged from the remnants of another band, Taylor Goldsmith (guitars and vocals) and his brother Griffin Goldsmith (drums) formed Dawes in 2009 in Los Angeles, California, with Wylie Gelber (bass) and Tay Strathairn (keyboards). In the band's short career so far, two claims to fame were Bob Dylan selecting Dawes as his opening act on tour and the band performing at Occupy Wall Street. The band’s third album, Stories Don't End, was released on April 9.

There is a buzz about this band, and the performance at Terminal 5 tonight demonstrated why. This was pleasant soft rock music you could enjoy with your dad as well as your baby sister. The band featured a few extended guitar and keyboard jams to make this a musicians’ band, but overall the spotlight was on the gentle folk pop compositions and strong, clean vocals. The band’s music leaned towards country, but never actually got there, remaining in the classic radio-friendly singer-songwriter vein. Many songs were so mellow that it was a stretch to call Dawes a rock band. Yet, Dawes mined and mastered this vintage sound well. Dawes might be the band to bring back the acoustic-based suburban California sound popularized in the 1970s by the likes of Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt and the Eagles.