December 8, 2015 by BOB BOILEN
When The Oh Hellos piled out of a van at NPR, someone remarked that it was like a clown car: Band members just kept coming, including brother and sister Tyler and Maggie Heath and their mom. They were all road-weary, trading sniffles, coughs and more. But the nine-piece group brought anthemic joy to the Tiny Desk in the form of buoyant songs whose underpinnings could still be dark and lonely.
Some of the music here is from The Oh Hellos' recent second album, Dear Wormwood, which was inspired in part by the writings of C.S. Lewis; it's about a protagonist who doubts a relationship before finding the resolve to never look back. Still, for all the deep sentiment, the band brings the same jubilant energy it brought to its performance at the Newport Folk Festival in July — even now that summer fun has given way to winter germs. Fortunately, the only contagion you'll encounter here is joy.
Dear Wormwood is available now.
"Hello My Old Heart"
"Like The Dawn"
Producers: Bob Boilen, Morgan Walker; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Morgan Walker, Julia Reihs; Production Assistant: Kate Drozynski; Photo by Jun Tsuboike/NPR
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