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Advance Review - Dawes: 'Good Luck with Whatever'

(Photo Credit - Big Hassle Media)

Advance Review - Dawes: Good Luck with Whatever (October 2, 2020) via Rounder Records

Dawes is back with Good Luck With Whatever, their first album under Rounder Records. After a string of self released albums, all of which made it in the top 10 on Billboard’s “Top Rock Albums” and “Americana/Folk Albums” charts. Rolling Stones’ long list of praises for Dawes began with North Hills (2009), which was recorded on analog tape. They called it “Authentically vintage.”

The album begins with “Like A Kid”, the forefront of ideology Taylor Goldsmith is trying to exemplify while still maintaining the consistent sound that first brought them attention worldwide. This track feels like a new gospel in the spirituality of what life really is. Goldsmith sings in his stoic ease-

“I’m about to be a married man but I still feel like a kid.”

“I’m a singer in a Rock n Roll band but I still feel like a kid."

It’s okay to wander and wonder, it’s finding the sense of ease and the balance of responsibility to go with it.

“Like A Kid” is followed up by the title track, “Good Luck With Whatever”. While being a pretty easy going track list, this is the most somber of the bunch off the album. While it presents the same ease the rest of the album has, it presents the probabilities of having to walk away from people that you no longer feel a kinship to, even when there is no ill will.

The album continues in a more lighthearted fashion, especially with “St. Augustine at Night”, an almost exclusively acoustic track that preempts the October 2nd release of the album. During the Jimmy Kimmel online exclusive event, Goldman exudes the same folk-rock spirit of James Taylor.

Guaranteed, Good Luck With Whatever will not disappoint the high expectations Dawes have set for themselves. This new venture with Dave Cobb (Chris Stapleton, Brandi Carlisle, Jason Isbell) as a producer is something special, and the extra attention Taylor Goldsmith was able to put into the continued emotion they have exemplified since 2009 is apparent. Dawes has and remains at the top of my list to see live. “Between the Zero and One” is one of the longest tracks off the album and is one of the definite folk rock ballads of the last decade. It made me think of Guns N’ Roses “November Rain”.

Rating - 4.5/5

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