Though Dominant Legs has been around for a minute — the SF indie outfit scored a BTW in 2009 and was listed among Stereogum’s Best New Bands of 2010 — the band’s new LP, Invitation serves as a great entry point. Its their most fully-formed release yet; the record mines ’80s radio rock and Fleetwood Mac-y song textures while simply showcasing a more focused, mature sound rife with interesting touchpoints. So, to walk us through those very touchpoints, is Dominant Legs figurehead Ryan Lynch. Make sure to hit a stream of Invitation at the bottom of the page and to revisit Girls’ video for “Honey Bunny,” which features Dominant Legs’ other principal Hannah Hunt in a starring role. (Ditto D. Legs’ own “Hoop Of Love” clip.)
1. Bruce Springsteen – “Thunder Road” Live on VH1 Storytellers
I bought the DVD of this performance when it was first released, and cried the whole way through. Everything Bruce said about his songs seemed to me a precious truth I’d been waiting to hear. While writing our album, I seemed to constantly return to the memory of Bruce describing “Thunder Road” as an invitation. I wanted our album to be welcoming too. I was influenced by this idea the most, hence the album title “Invitation.”
2. Nile Rodgers’ Giggin’ Tips
Nile just giving away his secrets for free. This was extremely helpful.
3. Richie Havens – “Follow”
This might be my favorite song. I’ve listened to it for that past fifteen years and always get the same feeling.
4. Bob Dylan – “Abandoned Love (Live 1975)”
We’ve never done anything that sounds like Dylan. But he is, hands down, my biggest inspiration.
5. “Christmas Vacation” performed by Mavis Staples
This song is always in the back of my mind. Can’t get rid of it.
6. Kenny Loggins – Footloose
Laws against dancing could not stop Ren McCormack. He was an inspiration to all.
7. Van Morrison – “Sweet Thing”
I celebrate Fleetwood Friday every Friday morning. (Lately it’s been with Tusk.) At around 6pm I like to throw on Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks to put myself in the right state of mind for the weekend.
8. Kid Creole – “My Male Curiosity”
Never underestimate the Kid!
9. Big Country – “In A Big Country”
I pulled out a bunch of LPs I specifically wanted to listen to while working on our record. Big Country ended up being one that I listened to quite often.
10. Stevie Wonder – “I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)”
I took Stevie Wonder Talking Book from my parents’ record collection when I was about ten years old and never gave it back.
11. Michael Jordan’s Playground from 2:34 to 3:50
“Chariots of Fire.” Like Kevin Johnson says, “He makes it look so easy. I mean, he’s so graceful. Like a ballerina.”
12. San Jose Sharks Comeback: History Will Be Made
Sports mirror life. Work hard, play hard, celebrate. I love my Sharks.
Listen to Invitation now via Hype Machine:
Invitation is out 9/27 on Lefse.