When you listen to Lord Huron, the Los Angeles based rock infused with a folk band, you’re easily disarmed by their lonesome charm and the majesty they create with their music. Seeing them live is much the same, but with more energy to latch onto. Tuesday night at the Civic, the band, led by Ben Schneider and accompanied by Mark Barry, Miguel and Tom, the band strolled into town to showcase their new album “Vide Noir,” which sees the band trying not to get pigeonholed into the beautiful yet similarly sounding aspects of their first two albums.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed 2015’s “Strange Tails, and their debut from 2012, “Lonesome Dreams” was one of my favorite albums of that year, but well a change is always good for a creative entity. But seeing as the Theater has a very generously sized crowd during the opening band (which rarely happens in this city), Lord Huron must be doing something right. The opener Cut Worms, which feature a heavy bluegrass, twangy quality to them, managed a decent set that seemed to at least partially engage the growing audience, even if it wasn’t this reviewers preferred cup of tea.
Next, though, the headliner was set to begin. I’m always hesitant of all ages shows, mostly because of, well, children and all, but if you didn’t know it was an all-ages show it would’ve been hard to recognize among the normal adult crowd of a New Orleans Tuesday night. The band, illuminated by green lights emerged in stage and dove into opener “Ancient Names.” To say the crowd was uninterested would be vastly wrong, and the band seemed to feed off the energy. Simply put, they efficiently fleshed out their sound to fill a hall and they do it well. Based on the energy of the opener, Ben and company were able to lead through a series of awesome sounding tracks including “Meet Me in the Woods,” among others. A stellar stage show also didn’t hurt in bringing the audience even closer. It’s memorable seeing them live again, but Bens' voice seemed to be much stronger and powerful than the previous times I’ve caught the band.
Having said all of that, it was surprising how apparently well known these guys( and one gal on keys) have become. I’ve now been told that they were on that Netflix suicide show, so maybe that was the push the band needed to become a bigger name, but either way, it worked. The music, put together by a tight cohesive band, with a simple yet stunning stage show really makes the show stand out among the best I’ve seen this year.
Within thirty minutes or so, LH Cemented the attention of the audience with the first track off their debut album. “Ends of the Earth,” on record is a hauntingly enchanting track, but accompanied by dim yellow lights and a slow stream of fog floating through the air, the song becomes a sort of love letter to every partner you’ve ever shared experiences with. It was maybe the early highlight of the show.
Continuing the show, the band presented stellar renditions of the heart swoon that is “ She Lit a Fire,” and of course the anthemic “Time to Run,” which filled the crowd with a little extra energy as the band marched towards the conclusion.
Photos by Steve Hatley