Tag Archives: Nik Ewing


Local Natives Make a Triumphant Return to Terminal 5

October 26th, 2016

Local Natives – Terminal 5 – October 25, 2016

Local Natives – Terminal 5 – October 25, 2016

(Local Natives play Terminal 5 again tonight.)

It’s been close to seven years since Gorilla Manor stamped Local Natives’ name into the indie-rock stratosphere with comparisons to Vampire Weekend and Arcade Fire. Earlier this fall, they returned with their third studio full-length, Sunlit Youth. And as with previous albums, the songwriting was honed by the original trio of guitarist Taylor Rice, guitarist-keyboardist Kelcey Ayer and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Hahn, but drummer Matt Frazier and bassist Nik Ewing also brought forward ideas. What formed was the cohesive record they featured at their show on Tuesday, the first of two nights at Terminal 5.

Rice, rocking a man bun, crooned on “Past Lives”—off the band’s latest—and the crowd really erupted for old fave “Wide Eyes,” the core trio’s vocals harmonizing in unison. Noting how long it had been since they’d been back in New York City, the band reminisced about their first local show at Pianos in 2009. Fans were starved for the West Coasters and Local Natives delivered, including past gem “Airplanes” as the room chanted the telling lyrics “I want you back.” Adding to the treasure trove, they dusted off “Camera Talk,” about which Rice confessed they “haven’t played in years.”

Although Nina Persson (the Cardigans) recorded “Dark Days” with the quintet, opener Charlotte Day Wilson happily filled in for her. Ayer and Rice remained alone onstage each haloed by a spotlight as they traded verses on the heartbreaking “Columbia.” With two weeks until Election Day, Rice offered hope in the midst of the chaos and encouraged attendees to vote, a perfect setup for “Fountain of Youth” and the uproarious cheers for the lyrics “I have waited so long, Mrs. President.” The evening concluded with the unraveling of Rice’s hair and a final descent into the crowd for “Sun Hands.” —Sharlene Chiu

Photos courtesy of Mina J


Local Natives Close Out Tour with Two Shows at Terminal 5

October 25th, 2016

Local Natives burst onto the scene in late 2009, thanks to their debut LP, Gorilla Manor (stream it below), filled with plenty of harmonies and dreamy melodies. After heading out across the world in support of the album, the L.A. band—Taylor Rice (vocals and guitar), Kelcey Ayer (vocals and keys), Ryan Hahn (guitar and vocals), Matt Frazier (drums) and Nik Ewing (bass)—returned with their sophomore effort, Hummingbird (stream it below), produced by the National’s Aaron Dessner, three years ago. Pitchfork called it a “thoughtful, lovely album with small gestures that provide great rewards.” Local Natives (above, performing “Past Lives” live in studio for KEXP FM in September) released their third full-length, Sunlit Youth (stream it below), last month. “The result is a batch of songs at the confluence between their debut Gorilla Manor’s joyous uplift and the world-wise depth of Hummingbird,” according to Drowned in Sound. “This is a bridge to bigger and hopefully even better things. Which feels like the exact point. For all the globe-trotting that went into the album, this is a band that—perhaps more than any other at the moment— innately sound like and capture their Californian home in all its beautiful complexity.” Local Natives close out their tour tonight and tomorrow at Terminal 5. Toronto singer-songwriter Charlotte Day Wilson opens both shows.