Painting their own version of heartland rock & roll with broad, unhurried strokes, Dawes continue carrying the torch of L.A.’s country-rock community -- once dominated by the likes of Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman, and Neil Young -- on their second album. Nothing Is Wrong picks up where North Hills left off, mixing the band’s midtempo songwriting with dusty handfuls of pedal steel, organ, and imperfect harmonies. The music may owe as much to the American South as California, but Los Angeles figures heavily in the band’s leisurely pace, which picks up at key moments but rarely moves beyond a casual clop. Some songs are even straight-up ballads, with “Moon in the Water” taking its cues from James Taylor and “A Little Bit of Everything” trading the band’s guitar-driven sound for upright piano. Those looking to rock out won’t find many headbanging opportunities here, but Nothing Is Wrong works well as driving music, particularly if the scenery outside your windshield matches the sepia-toned music.
AllMusic Review by Andrew Leahey