Album Review: Nathan Roberts & The New Birds: Nathan Roberts & The New Birds
Aside from my love of horror movies, I also inherited my mom’s taste in music. I’m sure it stems from spending Saturday night’s listening to all of her records while hanging out with family and friends but I’ve always loved classic rock, particularly from the 70’s. It’s something that has followed me into adulthood and some of my favorite newer acts are bands that incorporate that classic rock sound.
That’s what drew me to the Toledo based trio, Nathan Roberts & The New Birds. Nathan Roberts, Joel and Daniel Trzcinski create a great blend of indie folk rock infused with 70’s soul and rock and roll on their debut self-titled album. There’s a few different influences here ranging from Neil Young to Wilco and My Morning Jacket but the sound that the trio has created is truly all their own. It’s a short album, clocking in at just over 30 minutes, but that doesn’t make it any less memorable. The band is clearly finding their sound, sampling a bit of everything here from raucous rock songs to beautifully composed ballads.
The album kicks off with the straight up electric rock of “In Stereo”, a nice and catchy track with Roberts’ calming voice urging you to “let yourself go”, a perfect sentiment for enjoying this album. “No Trouble” has Motown written all over it with its funky bass and strings perfect for a drive on a sunny day with all the windows down. Pianos drive the Billy Joel-esque ballad, “Step Into the Light”, a very laid back track that truly showcases Roberts’ vocals. The album isn’t all bright and bubbly. My favorite track, “Walk On”, is a bit moodier and the simple guitars and drums allow the true emotion of the track to shine through nicely.
All in all, the debut album is a great showcase of what this talented trio is capable of. The songs flow nicely together and it leaves the listener wanting more from the group. For me, it evokes a sense of nostalgia which only makes me enjoy it more. It’s a great first album and I can’t wait to hear more.