At first, it seems kind of reductive to compare Lord Huron’s sun-burned sound to the dozens of other “Americana” bands out there today. I’m going to do it anyway. The swirling atmosphere of acoustic guitar and wordless vocals gives way to plaintive singing that would make Iron & Wine jealous. As the music expands until it’s the size of a planet, it might seem like the best song that Eddie Vedder forgot to include on his Into The Wild soundtrack. Lyrics about “roaming through the trees” recall the stylings of my last recommended track, and when those gorgeous harmonies start stacking up, you’ll swear Fleet Foxes wandered into the booth. But what “She Lit A Fire”–off Lord Huron’s excellent debut album Lonesome Dreams–does better than any other song by the aforementioned artists is create a true sense of communion, that intoxicating sensation that sweeps everyone who hears it into the song’s cathartic chorus.
One of the most beautiful qualities of a great song: during the moments it plays, it feels like it’s exactly about you. It doesn’t matter if you were never a struggling rapper from the wrong side of town. Everyone knows what it’s like to have difficulty coping with their life. You may have never had a girl run off with some other guy who lives across the sea. Everyone knows what it’s like to not feel good enough.
I picked this song because it’s an absolute revelation live, and Lord Huron’s opening for alt-J tonight at the Electric Factory. It’s unfortunate that I have other plans and can’t make the show–when it comes together and the whole crowd is singing, the real meanings of “refrain” and “chorus” appear. Moments like that can be so beautiful, those seconds where whoever she is, she lit a fire in all of us.
Play this song: As you run over the peak of a ridge, making your way down some dirt road in the middle of America. Dust kicks up behind you as the wind dances with the grain.