Review: Lohio Family Tree E.P.

Family Tree EP Cover Art by Lohio

Family Tree EP
Genres: Indie pop, Indie Folk, Alt-Country
RIYL: Broken Social Scene, The New Pornographers, The National


Lohio is beginning to become a popular mainstay here in Pittsburgh, and in general, the East Coast. These folks have been in the game for some time now, most likely remembered for their older sound, which felt a bit more like wistful alt-country with an edge. The pop sensibilities have really blossomed over the past year or so, and the influence of bands that they have opened for, such as The Books, Ra Ra Riot, and Tokyo Police Club is especially evident with this latest release.

Opener “Leave the City, Leave Your Room!” immediately conjures up a New Pornographers and Most Serene Republic stomp, with the group chorus melding into a Carl Newman/Neko Case duet just like the Pornographers. The piano in the background with bassist Liz Adams’ post-punk groove complement each other. Dutton’s songwriting is what really drives this EP, and that’s not to say skinsmaster Dave Bubbenheim and lead guitarist Erik Cirelli don’t add to the mix, but the real masterpiece is the combination of Dutton and Adams’ singing overtop of some very simple yet well-crafted pop music.

Lohio Band Group Photo“Adelai” is another song on the EP that has a similar feel to the opener. Again, this reflects on the new dancier sound that Lohio has been achieving over the past few years. Good on them, as it’s yet another bassline that will just get stuck in your head all day. And in proper form, the band will also be pushing this track as their single, with a new video hitting the internet waves soon.

The eponymous track, slotted in at the second position of this five song EP, is another great standout, evoking a similar feeling to bands such as Mates of State and Menomena with the combination of spacey textures and some Rhodes work.

“Wind & Leaves” and the bookend of the EP, “Funeral Song” will remind long-time fans of older material from the band, in which they sounded like the spiritual successors to Wilco, and maybe even The National.

Family Tree
is a great little EP that really ties in old with new as far as Lohio’s material. There’s plenty more goodness coming this way from them. Let’s hope it continues with a new LP too.

Make sure you get a chance to scope out these wonderful folks if they’re on tour near you, as they’re hitting the road in February.

Feb 3 – 136 Loft – Buffalo, NY
Feb 4 – 123 Pleasant St. – Morgantown, WV
Feb 5 – Davis Elkins College – Elkins, WV
Feb 7 – Union Hall – New York, NY
Feb 8 – Lit Lounge – New York, NY
Feb 10 – The Fat Frogg – New York, NY
Feb 12 – The Cave – Chapel Hill, NC
Feb 14 – Cosmic Charlie’s – Lexington, KY
Feb 15 – The Bishop – Bloomington, IN
Feb 16 – Rudyard Kipling – Louisville, KY
Feb 17 – Vollrath – Indianapolis, IN
Feb 18 – KOBO – Columbus, OH
Feb 19 – Thunderbird – Pittsburgh, PA

Wind and Leaves by lohiomusic

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