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- On Sale Friday at Noon It was just about the last song Taylor Goldsmith wrote before Dawes hit the studio: When My Times Comes, a rousing declaration of his hunger to be better, wiser, sharperas a writer, as a person, as the singer in a band. But now that Dawes' debut album has arrived, it's fair to say that Goldsmith's time is coming sooner than he'd planned. A graceful and poetic set of Southern-tinged yet firmly El Lay rock'n'roll, the Jonathan Wilson-produced NORTH HILLS is an electrifying and accomplished freshman effort. From the ruminative opener That Western Skyline to the joyous twang of When You Call My Name to the harmony-soaked Take Me Out of the City, NORTH HILLS makes it easy to hear why Daytrotter's Sean Moeller has already called it hands down one of the finest records of 2009... Dawes is a perfect band. The Los Angeles quartetGoldsmith, 23, (vocals, guitar), his brother Griffin Goldsmith, 18, (drums, vocals), Wylie Gelber, 21 (bass) and Alex Casnoff, 22 (piano, vocals) [however, Tay Strathairn plays piano, vocals on the record] shares DNA with Simon Dawes, Taylor and Wylie's teenaged band with Blake Mills, but is a vastly different, more creatively audacious beast. I didn't have a whole lot of respect for what it really meant to write songs back then, says Taylor Goldsmith. They were more a vehicle to get to be a young guy in a band. As Simon Dawes dissolved, he realized rock'n'roll was more than just a lifestyle choicethat even if he never got to be as brilliant as his favorite artists (a list that ranges from Nabokov, Fitzgerald and Rilke to Will Oldham, John Prine and Townes Van Zandt), that was where he had to aim. I wanted to write songs that actually meant something to me, he says. Those guys helped shape my character, how I look at the world. We started Dawes with that intention.
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