Press Play: Night Beats

Tumbleweeds, shootouts, and bank robberies might bring to mind old-school cowboy TV shows.  Western doesn’t just have to be for these retro-reruns, though.  The psych-meets-garage rock band, Night Beats, brings an outlaw twist to their modern sound.

Night Beats has roots in Texas; singer and founding member, Danny Lee Blackwell, hails from Dallas.  After a move to Seattle, Blackwell recruited drummer James Traeger and bassist Tarek Wegner.  The trio released three records in their time together: Night Beats, Sonic Bloom, and Who Sold My Generation.  In recent years, Blackwell became the lone (permanent) ranger of Night Beats.

On latest release, Myth of a Man, Night Beats draws from the musically-rich Nashville, where they worked with producer Dan Auerbach.  From his discography (The Black Keys, Lana Del Rey, Shannon and the Clams), it’s clear they’re riding the same musical wavelength.  While flirting with vintage sounds and recording styles, the band also weaves in their signature psych-rock/garage sound to create something very specific to Night Beats.  The band has toured with The Growlers, with an influence definitely heard from that group’s City Club.

Hitting play on this album is the first step on the way to becoming some sort of covert-cowboy, equal parts western-influenced and grimy nightclub.  “Her Cold Cold Heart” has a gritty, pseudo-salsa sound that sticks to your skin.  “There She Goes” is a pass through a crowded room, a scan of the space.  Then, they slow things down to the tender “(Am I Just) Wasting My Time”, a ballad complete with twirling strings and toe-tapping rhythm.  Like any true outlaws, Night Beats slip under-the-radar of any one genre and target whichever ones they please.

Step into a modern-day Western with single, “One Thing.”

Check out more from Night Beats and artists like them by staying tuned in to RSURadio.com!

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