Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Local H, "Wolf Like Me"

Brian St. Clair, one of modern rock's best drummers, is leaving Local H at the end of their fall tour. That news gets more serious when you remember that he's 50% of the band and that he's played with Scott Lucas for 14 years, even longer than Local H's original drummer, Joe Daniels. Surpassing Daniels' role at the kit seemed unthinkable in 1999, but four horribly underrated albums since then, St. Clair has written more of the band's history than anyone outside of the founder/songwriter. His replacement, and there will definitely be one, has huge shoes to fill.

I love the way that St. Clair's drumming drives Local H's version of "Wolf Like Me," originally by TV on the Radio. Their more minimalist approach than TVOTR's puts St. Clair entirely in charge of the song's rhythm, and he scores. It'd be easy for him to show off and play circles around Jaleel Bunton (see Local H's more recent cover of Rush's "2112 Overture/The Temples of Syrinx"), but here St. Clair paces himself for the song's benefit. By the second verse, you should be getting tickets to one of these shows.

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