Lord Huron – Webster Hall – June 21, 2013
Led by Ben Schneider, the Los Angeles–based Lord Huron provide the perfect soundtrack for wanderlust, scaling mountains overlooking lagoons and lakes below. And while recent album Lonesome Dreams evolved from a trip home to Michigan, it could just as easily have been inspired by the trails of Laurel Canyon. Either way, Schneider knows how to spin a tale of adventure. Keeping in character, he sauntered onstage at sold-old Webster Hall on Friday night wearing a modern cowboy hat. Opening with “Ends of the Earth,” Schneider and Co. enchanted fans right off the bat.
The vibe quickly turned up a notch as the frontman began feverishly clacking the rim of his tenor drum on “The Man Who Lives Forever,” and the crowd joined in, clapping along to “I Will Be Back One Day.” Continuing the musical journey, “Mighty” fluctuated between trekking atop mountains back down to a calypso party by the lagoon. Jingling chimes warranted hopping and skipping from Schneider as the song climaxed with a pounding of the skins that caused his hat to fly off—the particularly percussion-heavy song from their EP of the same name bares some sonic resemblances to another L.A. band, Fool’s Gold.
An overly chatty crowd marred what could have been a serene moment as Schneider strapped on his harmonica to croon the ballad-y “The Ghost on the Shore.” Maybe it was his recognition of the first day of summer that riled them preemptively. Or perhaps he should have waited on that exclamation for the next song, the appropriately titled fan favorite “She Lit a Fire.” Putting on his hat again for “Time to Run,” Schneider readied to gallop off into the sunset, but not before offering the country-twanged “Brother,” sans lap steel, and a heavily string-plucky “The Stranger.” For the encore, Schneider came out for “something quiet”: “Lullaby.” But despite shushing from audience members and even from the stage, the crowd’s rambunctiousness remained. After all, summer had just begun. —Sharlene Chiu