Fleet Foxes, Feist, Little Wings
It isn’t every day that you get to see a band with a dozen members shake out memorable tunes. Luckily Typhoon, a Portland band consisting of a stately 12 members, has released two albums and two EPs as well as a handful of beautifully shot videos that make you want to join this band and get in on the fun. Band members found each other in Salem, Oregon, and eventually found their way down to Portland – one of the Pacific Northwest musical centers – where Typhoon picked up its dozen members and began cultivating their specific blend of mystery music.
Main singer and songwriter Kyle Morton’s voice is a foggy blend of your sympathetic best friend, Little Wings’ Kyle Field and Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody. The group masterfully combines indie rock instrumentals and vocals with violins, percussion, hand claps, xylophone, horns and a choir of other instruments, making for inspiring and catchy songs that are melodic, emotional and well-orchestrated – basically the band did not want to leave anything out, which works out beautifully for the record. The songs Typhoon has created with their 12 members are thoughtful and charming - a sample lyric from their latest album: “Be kind to all of your neighbors, because they’re just like you…and you’re nothing special unless they are too,” from The Honest Truth.
And while it is probably a ton of work coordinating live gigs, I’m sure it is well worth it because not only are these the 12 people you want to do crafts with…erm, I mean, drink beer with – you also want to listen to them while you’re drinking that beer (live or on record). Beer-drinking, Typhoon-listening opportunity may knock this summer, because Typhoon is making the festival rounds: Sasquatch, Lollapalooza and the Newport Folk Festival as well as opening for the Decemberists. If you have a chance, go see this band…and if you aren’t near one of their summer appearances, hope that they don’t come to the conclusion that taking 12 musicians on the road isn’t worth it so you can see them in the near future.