Steeped in the current crop of Americana musicians, the loosely formed LA indie folk band Lord Huron have come out of nowhere to sit beside the very best exporters of hushed guitar, soothing harmonies and sparse instrumentalism: Fleet Foxes, Father John Misty, Iron & Wine and Sean Carey amongst others. Formed amongst the sweeping prairie lands and old farmhouses of rural Michigan, where the majority of the band’s members hail from, founder member Benji Schneider made a pilgrimage from LA to his home state to develop songs for a new record in early 2010. Finding inspiration by Lake Huron, Schneider created the songs that would become the EP Into the Sun. It’s an experimental record with Schneider’s smooth vocals playing second fiddle to the stunning musical arrangements and home made sound effects which at times can drown out all else.
The sound of Lord Huron is one of the Mid-West, capturing the great, elusive American landscape which musicians and artists have long sought to emulate in their art. Recent explorers of this ideal include Dan Deacon whose latest album, America, attempted to distill the spirit of the contemporary American spirit and landscape in folktronica and electronic pop beats, with mixed results.
In 2012, Lake Huron made their second EP, Mighty, created solely as a download and MP3 file, no hard copy. It shows that even though they’re a band in love with the America of the past, they have their feet planted in the now. Mighty further developed and refined the sounds of their debut EP Into the Sun. The songs here are more polished, less mix tape in its execution and bigger in scope. On Son of a Gun Caribbean influences can be heard which melt into Schneider’s detached vocals with lovely results. The tropical sounds flow in from the sea and add extra dimensions to their Americana folk roots. Mighty is one of those records that take many influences from many places but on the final compositions everything sits in place beautifully.
Lonesome Dreams, the debut full length album of Lord Huron will arrive on UK shores shortly, after enjoying moderate success in the US in 2012. From the cover art depicting a lone cowboy stalking the desert plains you know Lord Huron have not abandoned the hushed folk sound that made their name. On the title track, Schneider sings “In the deep of the night/ near the edge of the known/I pass by a moonlit lake/and a cold wind blows and my bones start to shake/And I feel I should know this place” Painting soulful images of rural America is what Lord Huron do best and on Lonesome Dreams they perfect this mood with much love.