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Submission: Violet Street Review By Shannon Taylor

Shannon Taylor is a creative located in our very own Oklahoma City. She submitted to us her review of Local Natives newest album.

Local Natives, an indie rock band hailing from the Golden State, have consistently been putting out music to drive around Yosemite (and beyond) to since 2010, and have now released their fourth studio album in 2019. Their music transcends time and borders, taking us on lyrical journeys made for California, but also made for any road you might be traveling—whether in life, in love, or maybe something else altogether.

They are a band that has been a constant in my musical radar over the years, whose music I always find myself coming back to, and at the same time a band that I feel like takes their time with their art and doesn’t force it to come out just to stay relevant. They carry their music like a child, only letting it out into the world when it has matured into the beautiful harmonies and melancholic chords that so many have come to love. Their new album, Violet Street, is no different, an ode of sorts to existence after youth, and the grey areas of life in general.

While their previous album, Sunlit Youth (2016) seemed to dote more on life’s exhilaration and the potential of optimism, Violet Street requires a sense of all-purpose doubt as the trials and tribulations of adulthood loom and ebb through life’s intricacies. The questions posed aren’t about breaking through into a new skin, but rather, they are the what’s left of the shell of the skin that’s been worn for years before. The music carries you through from song to song, effortlessly, while the lyrics inevitably dig deeper, imploring you to take a look at what you’ve made of your being so far. A cynic’s view, maybe, echoes missed opportunities of the past, or questions for the future. Perhaps the most obvious, “When Am I Gonna Lose You”, resonates over an upbeat chorus. An internal struggle hidden amongst music that makes you want to dance, intertwined so seamlessly.

Still, this isn’t to say Local Natives’ newest album is full of only pessimism and only post-youth messages. Local Natives are a band full of timeless songs to add to any road trip playlist, from this album, and the three prior. Violet Street, while absolutely something you can listen to during an existential crisis, is also an album simply testifying what it means to be alive at this point in time. What it means to love. What it means to hurt. What it means to question. What it means to imagine. Life, in its many forms and features, is captured in the raw with their music.

you can keep up with Shannon on instagram @shantays and on twitter @shantays94

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