Friendly Savages
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Friendly Savages

Austin, Texas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Austin, Texas, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Indie

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Oct
17
Friendly Savages @ The High Watt

Nashville, Tennessee, USA

Nashville, Tennessee, USA

Oct
16
Friendly Savages @ Eddie's Attic

Decatur, Georgia, USA

Decatur, Georgia, USA

Sep
27
Friendly Savages @ Baylor University Fountain Mall

Waco, TX, Texas, USA

Waco, TX, Texas, USA

Music

Press


"I'm completely biased, but I think 'Asteroid J-30' by the great @FriendlySavages is totally fantastic." - Twitter - Josh Ritter


"I'm completely biased, but I think 'Asteroid J-30' by the great @FriendlySavages is totally fantastic." - Twitter - Josh Ritter


"Earlier this month, Friendly Savages released their debut album O, Joshua! making Austin rooted folk-rock lovers proud. My introduction to this band was through Meraki Creative’s Penny and Sparrow video for “Brothers.” What else were that mandolin and accordion up to? I had to know.

They somehow manage to bring a banjo and mandolin to the table in an original way. They’re catchy, but not in an overdone way. Their melodies keep you on your toes, eager to find out what’s coming next (“Her Locket on a Chain” being my favorite example of this). They’re a band you just need to be listening to, okay?" - Back Down South


"I’m going to go out on a limb and call these guys one of the best groups working in Austin today. Their debut album O, Joshua! recalls a sound not too far removed from the Avett Brothers or Mumford and Sons and deserves to gain recognition on a national scale. Check these guys out soon so that you can honestly say you were down from the beginning. It isn’t going to take long for the world to take these guys away from us, and they’ll deserve it when they do." - The Horn


O, Joshua has a familiar and appealing sound that flows from a Head and the Heart indie folk/rock feel to a more sophisticated vibe at times, reminiscent of Wilco’s The Whole Love or indie-folk up-and-comers The Vespers. The most interesting part, however, isn’t Friendly Savages’ sound – though the random track will have an unexpected danceable rhythm such as “I Have Your Ghost” or the eerily solemn “Joshua Plays the Pipes” that completely takes you by surprise. The hook for me is the album’s quirky, haunting narrative found in the rise and fall of the music and lyrics. Being the sci-fi enthusiast that I am, I have spent, perhaps too long, analyzing and re-listening to the lyrics from beginning to end of O, Joshua. Call me crazy, but the ultimate narrative arc seems to be about an asteroid coming to earth and challenging the inhabitants to reflect on love, loss, compassion and even their own imminent death.

The album starts with a purely musical 30 second bit entitled “To An Asteroid” and immediately dips into “Counted Lost”, a folksy ballad setting the scene for rest of the album, describing an image of nature and open air as “The smell of the sea and the light of the moon are pockets of America that still feel new / they whisper all night that the clouds above us aren’t the end of the earth / dust catches the light of suns beyond our sight.” By the end of this track the lyrics urge the listeners to allow themselves to “lose their way” in this narrative, so that the rest of the album will chronologically take them on a journey of the asteroid accelerates toward earth, casually being mentioned once in a while in the lyrics.

Love and regret comes in throughout the middle of the album, most notably and heartfelt in “The Hold of the Lord on My Sparrow” and “Ten Natives.” Then finally we get to “Natchez Trace” where the narrative picks up speed again with the narrator declaring “I’m just an earthstronaut / I know this rock is not my home / I’ll tear my earth suit off / peel the fabric past my bones.”

Probably the catchiest of all the songs on this album, “Natchez Trace” is also the turning point in the narrative, allowing the narrator to separate himself from earth and its material means. “My cigarette – it sparkles to the ground” implies leaving something behind that is still burning but ultimately useless to you.

“Asteroid J30” wraps up this complex story as the final track on the album. Most notably the lyrics profess “Asteroid J-30 had it out for us / Where it saw man, it wanted dust / We were busted / We were busted / NASA ran the model a million times / They said the stars had been aligned / and we were busted / Very busted.” The fatalistic narrative arc is the interesting edge that this band of witty, creative young men has to differentiate them from all the other good indie-folk bands out there.

Friendly Savages will be playing again Friday, September 6th at Stubb’s with Penny and Sparrow and Brave Baby.

- Bailey Cool - Ovrld.com


"Catchy folk melodies is one thing Friendly Savages brings to the stage...A folksy sound reminiscent of Mumford and Sons dominates the Austin, Texas natives set. Songs like "Her Locket on A Chain" mix husky vocals with the sometimes-jarring mandolin and banjo solos to form an overall catchy and relaxing melody." - Belmont Vision


"There’s a band down in Austin called Friendly Savages that had might as well be the work of a Mumford and Sufjan collaboration."

"And the music is just as good a fit as the members. The lingering, husky vocals and twang of the violin are obvious nods to inspiration band the Head and the Heart. A plucking banjo brings Sufjan Stevens to the party, and the hopeful lyrics bring a wholesome completeness to the quartet. “Her Locket on a Chain” even ends with an eclectic jam sesh channeling Mumford & Sons’ “Winter Winds” finale."


- Ethos Magazine


"There’s a band down in Austin called Friendly Savages that had might as well be the work of a Mumford and Sufjan collaboration."

"And the music is just as good a fit as the members. The lingering, husky vocals and twang of the violin are obvious nods to inspiration band the Head and the Heart. A plucking banjo brings Sufjan Stevens to the party, and the hopeful lyrics bring a wholesome completeness to the quartet. “Her Locket on a Chain” even ends with an eclectic jam sesh channeling Mumford & Sons’ “Winter Winds” finale."


- Ethos Magazine


"Friendly Savages are Austin's newest folk rock buzz band." - The Austin Chronicle


"Armed with acoustic guitar, banjo, mandolin, violin, the occasional piano and campfire vocal harmonies, they deliver an earnest brand of folk-rock without pretensions beyond that special magic that can be found in the acoustics of a living room."

"...the music is so simply engaging and organic...their greatest strengths are in the essentials of music." - InsideVandy.com


Discography

The Escape (Single - March 2013)

O, Joshua! (April 2013)

Photos

Bio

In the three years it has been together, Friendly Savages has established itself as a band to know throughout the Southeast with its powerful, genre-defying sound. Heralded as “one of the best groups working in Austin today” (The Horn), the group serves a double helping of passion and levity in their can’t-miss concerts. Friendly Savages is making big noise with the studio, as well. Their full-length debut, O, Joshua!, found immediate success, climbing to #3 on the iTunes singer songwriter charts and quickly seeing over 100,000 streams on Spotify.

Take a few minutes to listen to O, Joshua! and you’ll understand what the buzz is about–the songs are at turns funny and thoughtful, happy and sad, simple and profound. The band wields a musical and lyrical depth which is rare in today’s folk/rock scene. Or in any other, for that matter. Heck, even folk-superstar Josh Ritter has a favorite song: “I’m completely biased, but I think “Asteroid J-30” by the great Friendly Savages is totally fantastic.”

The group is made up of Josh Coulter, John McDonald, Michael Summers and Malcolm White. With each member coming from a distinctly unique musical background, Friendly Savages’ music breaks the mold of typical folk, stretching into rock, blues, and classical music. Concert goers are hard pressed to find an equal to the energy, joy, and musicality of a Friendly Savages show anywhere else. As Back Down South put it, “they’re a band you just need to be listening to, ok?”

Band Members