Following the release of their breakout success and debut album, Gorilla Manor (2010) and their follow-up second record Hunningbird (2013), Los Angelian five-piece, Local Natives have returned with Sunlit Youth.
The kick-start album-opener ‘Villainy’ signifies the band’s unbridled new energy and huge ambitions. Electronic notes sputter and swirl, rising and setting as drums pound and keys light the path. It heralds more of a focus in that energy—something the band has had in spades since the beginning—than a change in direction, and the way it reaches beyond the rafters and straight into the sun points the way for the tracks to follow.
While this is new ground for Local Natives to some degree, the sound never loses those qualities that made us fall in love with them in the first place, an accomplishment the band endears to simply following their desire to please themselves.
Looking back upon their own youths yet constantly moving forward to the future, Local Natives have embraced their evolution and made what could be seen as the most Local Natives-sounding album of their young careers.