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Hiatus Kaiyote Brings Quirk & ‘Mood Valiant’ To NPR Music’s ‘Tiny Desk (Home) Concerts’ Series

By now, we're sure that you've tucked into the unique soul of Hiatus Kaiyote on their latest effort Mood Valiant. If you haven't, then what are you waiting for? Maybe you just need to see the crew make their musical magic in a live setting. In that case, we've got exactly what you're looking for as the band is the latest to take part in NPR Music's Tiny Desk (Home) Concerts series.

The crew is probably the quirkiest of the R&B soul artists around, and their Tiny Desk setup shows that. Not only do we get a psychedelically colored backdrop and numerous tchotchkes (including an actual tiny desk), but we also get friends of the band dressed as different creatures (we spotted a chicken, a parrot, some kind of sea creature, a mothman and a moon). It's not surprising that the band's vocalist Nai Palm gets in on the act dressed as a lamb as the performance goes on.

The band takes the opportunity to showcase Mood Valiant with five selections from the set. They begin with the jazzy "Sip Into Something Soft," with Nai and the backing vocalists dropping sweet harmonies while the band jams. From there, they swerve into "Rose Water," a soothing cut that evolves into a jazz-fusion jam at its closing moments. The band then takes us into "And We Go Gentle" before giving us the only single from the album performed during the set, "Get Sun." The Brazillian funk-influenced cut is brought to life nicely — especially with the backing vocalists there to help recreate some of Nai's intricate harmonies — and even gets a slightly revamped ending that's a bit smoother than the album version. Closing the set is "Blood And Marrow," which also closes the album. Its dreaminess is only enhanced with its bossa nova rhythm emphasized and the tight harmonies showing why Hiatus Kaiyote are beloved throughout the industry.

If you've never seen the band live, then this Tiny Desk performance might give you a pretty good idea of what to expect. It also might just give you a new appreciation for the Australian band and their eclectic sense of soul.


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